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The Journal Gazette

Wednesday, June 12, 2019 1:00 am

Addition to garage gets OK by city commission

Civic Center project to add two levels to get $7 million

DAVE GONG | The Journal Gazette

The Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission on Tuesday authorized a grant agreement with the Allen County-Fort Wayne Capital Improvement Board for a project that will add two new levels to the southern portion of the Civic Center parking garage downtown. 

In a separate vote, the commission also approved a construction contract for the Civic Center garage project. The Capital Improvement Board will provide $7 million toward the project. Those funds will be deposited in the Civic Center garage fund and set aside exclusively for the project, Redevelopment Director Nancy Townsend said. 

“We anticipate receiving the proceeds from the CIB sale of bonds to us sometime in later July,” Townsend said. 

The project will add about 225 spaces on a new fifth and six level of the garage. The project also calls for other exterior enhancements to the parking garage, if possible.

“The first priority, obviously is adding floors and getting the additional spaces,” Townsend said. “That's the main deliverable of this.” 

City Councilman Jason Arp, R-4th, was the sole member of the Redevelopment Commission to vote against the grant and construction contract.

Redevelopment Commission member Win Moses was absent during the parking garage votes but did arrive at the meeting shortly after. 

At its May 23 meeting, the Capital Improvement Board tweaked the agreement, extending the bond to 31 years from the original 30. CIB member and local developer Don Steininger said at the time the new floors would be “a great addition” to downtown, noting that “It's going to make a very attractive parking garage.” 

Officials have said adding to the existing structure would cost less than buying land and building a new garage.

The Civic Center garage currently has 1,013 spaces. The new parking, officials say, will alleviate issues that arise during the week when 90% of spaces in the structure are taken through contract parking. 

dgong@jg.net