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Central Street Right-Turn Lane Added 
Central Street has been restriped near the State Street Garage.

Last week, the City restriped a block of Central Street next to the State Street Garage, designating right turns into the garage.

Some motorists may be curious: What's with the new gated entrance into the bottom levels of the garage?

The bottom floors of the garage, which had not previously been open to vehicles, have been reconfigured to accommodate monthly-permit parking for downtown residents, as well as valet parking for guests to the Hyatt Place hotel in the historic Farragut Hotel Building, 530 S. Gay St., which is set to open later this month.

The hotel will feature 165 rooms, a rooftop bar and event space, and a street-level Starbucks. It’s a $25 million investment that brings back into reuse a vacant nine-story grand hotel building with a storied past.

The Hyatt Place is paying for 160 garage parking spaces, but that won't significantly affect the long-term capacity of the State Street Garage. For one thing, the reconfiguration of the lower levels created about 100 new spaces. Secondly, construction is set to begin next year on two new upper-level decks, plus possibly a third partial deck, creating between 480 and 550 new spaces.

By the end of 2019, the garage will have added at least 580 new spaces (counting the lower levels being opened to residential parkers and hotel guest vehicles, plus the construction of the two upper decks). So while the Hyatt Place will have access to 160 spaces, there will be a net gain of 420 new parking spaces by 2019.

But what about next year, when the garage expansion work closes the current top deck to parkers?

That's a temporary loss of 240 spaces. But Rick Emmett, the City's Downtown Coordinator, said it's important to recognize the increased capacity of the State Street Garage.

"When the City added a deck in 2013, the staging and the construction dropped capacity to about 400 spaces," he said. "But now, the garage has more than 1,200 spaces. Even during the 2018 and 2019 construction, we'll have twice as many spaces available to the public as we had in '13. And on the back end, we'll be adding more than 400 new spaces that will be available to the public."
Posted by evreeland On 11 December, 2017 at 12:48 PM