Think about how big a football field is. Think about constructing a building three football fields long and almost one football field wide. If this weren’t challenging enough, suppose it had to have two, 450-ft-long unobstructed openings—and the building interior had to accommodate several different types of aircraft and the entire project had to be environmentally friendly. Such a project can be summed up in two words: Hangar 511, which is now a LEED certified Naval Air Station in Jacksonville, Florida.
The new Hangar 511 at Naval Air Station Jacksonville is the largest hangar in the Navy’s inventory, capable of storing 33 P3-C Orions, four C-130 Hercules, and a helicopter unit. In the coming years, the hangar will be instrumental in housing the P-8 Poseidon and its 120-foot wingspan.
How It’s Unique:
Hangar 511 is one of only three hangars, military or civilian, to achieve LEED Silver certification. Schulz says HNTB fitted sections of Kalwall—a translucent, polymer panel—into the southern wall so natural light could illuminate the hangar and curb energy consumption. The designers also avoided using conventional sliding hangar doors and opted for Megadoors, which are made from fabric and pulled vertically, similar to blinds in a bedroom.
“It has, I think, the largest fabric hangar doors ever constructed,” Schulz says. “There are two of them that are 60 feet tall by 450 feet long. The truss that spans that 450 feet is 15 feet wide and 35 feet tall. Those are very interesting pieces of equipment.”
The project team that helped earn this achievement had to spend significant time learning about LEED Certification. There are so many moving parts, as well as technical details, that must be factored into such a complex building project. It’s fantastic that they were able to earn certification at the Silver level.
We first learned about the LEED certified naval hangar in this Popular Mechanics article on unique military bases