Phenix City plans two-tiered parking deck downtown

mowen@ledger-enquirer.comOctober 1, 2013 

Phenix City is planning to build a 200-plus space, $2.5 million parking deck at the northwest corner of Fourteenth Street and Third Avenue.

The two-tiered deck will have entrances on Third and Fifth Avenues, and will sit across the street from the new Marriot hotel currently under construction and within steps of the County Courthouse, the planned Troy University campus and the Whitewater Express business, city officials said Tuesday.

It’s the growth of the riverfront area that is driving the city’s decision to invest in public parking, they said.

Phenix City Council unanimously approved a $7,400 contract Tuesday morning with Barrett-Simpson Inc. to survey the terraced property, which the city currently owns.

By Tuesday afternoon, Barret-Simpson surveyors were already on the property, which has only one building and a scattering of trees on it.

Stephen Smith, city director of finance said the city has budgeted $2.5 million for the project and hopes to break ground early next year with a possible completion date next fall. So far, there is no visual representation of the project available, he said.

“We’re waiting on the architects and engineering work to be finished,” Smith said. “We’ve hired them, but they haven’t finished their work yet.”

Mayor Eddie Lowe said the uneven topography works to the city’s advantage, allowing them to build a two-level deck without the expense of having ramps between them. The structure will be built to accommodate future vertical expansion if the need should arise, Lowe said.

“We’re building it and designing it such that at some future time we could add a third deck, if growth warrants it,” Smith said. “Right now, we anticipate that we need about 200 spaces. We’ve already had requests for 49 spaces to be leased, and we anticipate that number to go up as we get under way with it.”

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