Big Oak Flat Visitor Contact Station Improvements
This project includes replacement of the visitor contact station with a new welcome center just inside the Big Oak Flat entrance to Yosemite National Park. The welcome center services include visitor information, interpretation, retail sales, campground reservations, wilderness permits, and restrooms. The proposed facility design includes office space for staff working at the facility and within this district of the park. The proposed welcome center is 4,000 sf and a separate restroom facility is 1,250 sf. The new buildings will incorporate high energy efficient systems while site improvements include relocation of an emergency generator and a communication hub serving the entrance development area. In association with the welcome center, a new exterior orientation plaza will allow programs and self-serve orientation for visitors. The plaza includes information on general park orientation, interpretation, seasonal information, and trip planning while also providing shade areas and informal seating.
Visitor parking will be expanded with an accessible pedestrian walkway extending from the parking area to the welcome center and restrooms. The Otak team developed solutions responding to a range of programmatic, functional, and logistical requirements involving multiple stakeholders, while developing an architectural language and character appropriate for a project of this significance—an entrance to this unique World Heritage Site. Otak is providing architecture, landscape architecture, structural and civil engineering and survey services.
Client: National Park Service
Project Manager: Chad Weiser
Type: Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Transportation