Atlanta’s Top Metro Station Swaps Concrete for Mass Timber Canopy

The project is part of a US $230m redevelopment of the MARTA Five Points Station in time for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

Wed 26 Jun 24


One of the world’s largest construction companies is replacing a massive pre-stressed concrete canopy in downtown Atlanta with timber – swapping out 1970s brutalist concrete for an open-section mass timber canopy, keeping the city’s rail and bus networks under one huge roof.

Starting next month, Skanska—which has 28 offices across the United States—will dismantle the 45-year-old MARTA Five Points Station canopy in parts, replacing the reinforced concrete roof with a massive timber superstructure over a 14-month period.

According to Keli Davis, MARTA’s executive leading the project, “Workers will remove the half-acre roof, glass, and rafters…they’ll then dismantle the remaining pieces in phases to prepare for the reconstruction.”

Delivered in time for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, the US $49m project is part of a US $230m rejuvenation of the station – with city officials closing street access to the site during construction works.

A 3-D animation of the MARTA Five Points canopy being removed piece by piece

Animation: Courtesy of MARTA

One of Atlanta’s highest-profile projects in decades—perhaps since the 1996 Olympic Games—it comes at a time when more than US $6.5 billion in private development is being invested in 65 acres of new real estate in South Downtown.

“That includes the construction of 1,800 residential units and 1.5 million square feet of new commercial space — projects that “will redefine Downtown,” said A.J. Robinson of Central Atlanta Progress.

While station works will see major upgrades above ground, four underground “mega columns” designed and built to respond to seismic events will remain untouched.

“Those columns go all the way to bedrock,” Ms Davis said, “They’re not coming out at all. That’s what holds the station up.”

“The station itself, the platforms? An absolute engineering marvel!”


  • Jason Ross

    Jason Ross, publisher, is a 15-year professional in building and construction, connecting with more than 400 specifiers. A Gottstein Fellowship recipient, he is passionate about growing the market for wood-based information. Jason is Wood Central's in-house emcee and is available for corporate host and MC services.


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