The Springfield City Commission has officially approved a roughly $7 million downtown parking garage project.
Construction will begin in early July, Springfield City Manager Bryan Heck said.
“They plan on having an eight and a half month time frame for construction,” Heck said. “Meaning it will be completed at the end of the first quarter of 2020.”
The garage will sit at the corner of Fountain Avenue and Columbia Street. Construction plans call for a three story structure with 305 parking spaces, Heck said.
“We have seen a lot of success along the east side of Fountain Avenue, with a lot of restaurants, stores and shops that have opened,” Heck said. “This will compliment that.”
Fountain Avenue includes Winans Chocolates and Coffees, Champion City Guide + Supply, Le Torte Dolci, Salato Deli and Stella Bleu, which opened on Tuesday.
The commission voted in favor of entering a joint agreement with Clark State Community College on the parking garage project on Tuesday, securing the funding to construct the garage.
The joint use agreement will release $2.55 million in state funds for the project courtesy of the Ohio Department of Higher Education, said Heck.
“Our partners at Clark State Community College, Clark County and SpringForward are second to none in their professionalism and pride in this community,” Heck said. “We appreciate the role each of them played in this project.”
Additional funding will include $1 million Clark County will provide and $3.3 million from the city.
Heck said previously the commission had reached an agreement with Dugan and Meyers, a construction company located in Blue Ash, to cap total costs on the garage at roughly $6.8 million.
“The collaboration on this project is just the brand of cooperation that makes this such a forward-thinking community,” Heck said. “We accomplish amazing things when we work together, and I couldn’t be more proud of the efforts of everyone involved.”
The downtown Springfield parking garage has been discussed by the commission for several years as a way to provide additional parking downtown as the city works to attract more retail and business to the city center.
“This garage will be as much about providing parking for people who work downtown, as people who go to restaurants and shop downtown,” said Springfield Mayor Warren Copeland.
Over 3,000 square feet of retail space will also be available on the ground level along Fountain Avenue.
Heck said after construction is completed the retail space will mostly be considered, “a cold dark box.”
“This will give tenants the freedom to decide if they want to use the whole 3,000 square feet or divide it up and only use some it,” Heck said.
Springfield also recently broke ground on an $8 million, 34-unit townhouse housing development near the garage site. The townhomes will be about 1,300 square feet and will cost about $200,000.
The two projects are just some of the development projects in downtown Springfield over the last decade, including the National Trail Park and Recreation District Chiller Ice Arena, Springfield Regional Medical Center, Mother Stewart’s Brewing Co. as well as retail and restaurant improvements to Fountain Avenue.
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