Located at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, within a public park, the PAMM was elevated 22 feet above sea level to minimize storm surge concerns from Biscayne Bay. This unprecedented design integrates the parking garage below the museum with planting beds, rain cisterns concealed in berms, stormwater infiltration, storm surge storage and aquifer recharge. The innovative porous-floored parking garage and rain gardens have been designed to funnel rain into the ground water system, reducing local flooding and runoff into the Bay, and limiting the need for expensive stormwater infrastructure.
While the PAMM building expresses the materiality of raw concrete, native plants express the raw landscape, in contrast. Native trees, shrubs, groundcovers and vines spring from the ground plane in vibrant counterpoint to formal, hanging, vertical gardens. Lush pan-tropical vegetation is deconstructed to exhibit the Earth’s most basic forms, including gravel in paths, plazas and parking garage.
The richly detailed sculpture garden supports art exhibits within a landscape that transitions from naturalistic habitats surrounding the building, to mixed plantings adjacent to the building, and an exotic palette within the garage and museum levels. The sequence begins on Museum Drive, continues in the underground parking garage with a surprising display of plants in unexpected locations, continuing above ground with the spectacle of hanging vegetation.
Formal hanging gardens include water wise, animal-friendly plant material, and utilize rain and A/C condensation for irrigation. Relocated existing trees serve as artistic focal points and anchors for the garden. New plants were chosen for resilience to saltwater, heavy wind, drought and excessive rain.
The landscape provides a multitude of environmental services, and limits overuse of resources. The design includes technical and sustainable innovations that are mostly invisible to the public, providing a beautiful and serene location along the waterfront to explore art, both natural and manmade.