June 01, 2007
Press Releases & News

Clark Completes Collection Storage Facility for Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History

SUITLAND, Md. – Clark Construction Group, LLC recently completed a collection storage area and laboratory project for the National Museum of Natural History. The new 125,000-gross-square-foot facility, located at the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum Support Center, is designed to store flammable artifacts and other collections.

The three-level, alcohol-storage facility, known as POD 5, is integrated into an existing facility and consolidates collections from POD 3 and the National Museum of Natural History. It also includes 25,000 square feet of supporting laboratory space.

The new building features six storage facilities on each floor. It accommodates fire and safety design features required for alcohol-based preservation processes. For example, the storage facilities are separated by smoke and heat dividers; the building features special sprinkler, gas-detection and drainage systems; and the space is kept at a constant temperature and relative humidity.

The facility also includes state-of-the-art mobile shelving units. It is the first mobile storage system to be used for holding alcohol-based storage containers.

The project team included EwingCole, of Washington, D.C., architect/engineer/interior designer; Sako & Associates, of Fairfax, Va., security and communications; and Alpha Corporation, of Dulles, Va., civil engineer.

Serving a nationwide and international professional audience, the Museum Support Center is the Smithsonian’s headquarters for research and education in conservation and scientific studies of collection materials.