Discusses Expanding Downtown Garages
MINOT – The Minot City Council voted unanimously Monday to make the future City Hall parking ramp downtown free of charge for anyone to use once the move is made from the current City Hall. A portion of the ramp will be dedicated to parking for city staff.
The parking ramp, located at 205 First Street Southwest, also known as the Renaissance or City Hall Garage, has about 188 parking spaces. According to staff, city employees could fill up to 80 of those spots.
City Manager Harold Stewart told the council if parking were to be free for staff and not for the general public, that may have to be considered as an employee benefit.
“The revenues from this garage were $37,462, not a whole bunch of money,” said Alderwoman Carrie Evans. “I think definitely employees who are moving over with City Hall should have free parking at least until we figure out some alternative.”
Finance Director David Lakefield told the council it will be difficult to predict how full the garage will become once parking is free of charge.
The other downtown parking garage, located at 5 First Street Southwest, also known as the Central Garage, will still have a fee for parking.
The City Council was later presented with a plan to move forward with expanding both garages. They decided to wait to move forward until May when the North Dakota State University Architectural students are projected to have completed their round of drawings and visions for downtown Minot.
Brian Billingsley, director of community and economic development, advised the council to hold off on the Renaissance Garage until City Hall has moved into their new location.
“I think the central ramp is ready to go, there’s nothing holding that one back,” said Billingsley. “There’s no reason to rush. We can wait until May.”
Billingsley also said since the ground is already broken it will be an easy project to begin.