UPDATE: During garage construction, please follow these instructions in the South garage:
If you arrive Monday through Friday between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m., get a ticket from the attendant on the ramp at the third floor entrance. Exit and pay on the first floor when you are done in the garage.
If you arrive Monday through Friday between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m., enter on the third floor. If you need a ticket to get it validated, see cashier on first floor. Otherwise, exit and pay the flat $2 fee at the same time, when you are done in the garage, on the first floor.
If you arrive Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., enter on the third floor. Pay flat fee of $1 as you exit the garage, on the first floor.
The garage is not staffed weekdays before 7 a.m. or after 10 p.m.. It is also not staffed Saturdays before 8:30 a.m. and after 6 p.m., or all day Sunday.
Here’s the good news: both the North and South Garages are in better shape than anyone thought—engineers determined neither needs to be rebuilt. Here’s the not so good news, coming toward the end of the summer of endless construction: both garages need repair work to extend their lives and ensure safety.
Nathan Construction will start a $400,000 improvement project August 19 at the South Garage, move on to the North Garage and is expected to complete all the work by November 19.
These repairs are part of a four-year rehab plan for both garages recommended as the result of a survey by Atlantic Engineering Services completed earlier this year. At the south garage, the slab coating that was installed in 2004 to protect the wiring system and needs replacing. Some areas of concrete also will be repaired.
Beginning August 20 and lasting for the duration of the South Garage construction, drivers will enter via Municipal Way (off Florida Avenue) and exit onto Florida Avenue. Informational signs will be posted and staff will “direct traffic.” The 5th and 6th floors of the garage, as well as the elevator to those floors are off limits, so for the time being people will need to use the outdoor stairs to get to Washington Road. (Those with mobility issues should park on the street, in a surface lot or in the north garage.) As the project progresses, Public Works Director Tom Kelley, who is supervising the project, hopes it may be possible to provide access to the elevator and bridge to Washington Road, but nothing has been decided about that yet.
At the North Garage, the work will involve replacing the caulk sealant between joints in the slab of the top level. Some areas of the topping slab will be replaced and some repairs made to the precast double tee panels from below the top level. Because the repair work is limited to the top level and the rest of the garage will remain open, there is no change in ingress or egress at the North Garage and the work should cause little inconvenience to parkers.
Kelley says he does not expect the work on the garages to have a big impact on parking uptown, as there usually are empty spaces in both garages. If a garage is filled, a sign will be posted. That said, people with appointments or reservations may want to allow a few extra minutes in order to find optimal parking. The commercial districts office will supply stores and professional offices with parking brochures that identify all parking spots in and near the business district.
Mark Quealy of the parking office says provisions will be made to ensure there is adequate parking for permit holders.
Thanks in advance to residents and visitors’ for enduring “short term pain for longterm gain.” In addition to avoiding more costly repairs that eventually would be needed if the work were put off, the finished project will significantly improve the appearance of the garages. For example, the South Garage’s top level will be clean and uniform and will have a hump to shed water better.
For questions about the construction project, contact Tom Kelley, 412-412-343-3869, firstname.lastname@example.org. For parking questions, contact Mark Quealy, 412-440-2035, email@example.com, or visit www.mtlebanon.org.