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Updated 10:00 AM October 31, 2007




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Regents approve Thompson Street parking structure addition

A project that will add nearly 300 new staff parking spaces on Central Campus moved one more step forward last week when the Board of Regents approved the schematic design.

Construction on an addition to the Thompson Street parking structure is expected to be complete in fall 2009.
(Image courtesy Carl Walker Inc.)

The addition, which will include 385 parking spaces, also will provide 9,000 gross square feet of office and support space for the Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) department and the Office of Budget and Planning. The addition will be built on the west side of the existing 728-space structure where two small surface parking areas exist today. Once complete, the structure will accommodate approximately 1,060 vehicles.

"This is a very exciting project for the University and for our department," says Dave Miller, executive director of PTS. "It will help us reach several goals in addition to adding capacity to the parking system."

Relocating the office space for Parking Customer Services from the existing location in the structure to the new west side will allow many improvements:

• A new, indoor bicycle storage facility with capacity for 50 bikes will help enhance alternative transportation options;

• Interior parking spaces for motorcycles will provide a safe entry/exit lane that doesn't currently exist in other older structures;

• Pedestrian movement along the south end of the structure and within the structure will be improved for safety and security; and

• Relocation of the Office of Budget and Planning from off-campus leased space to co-locate with PTS is projected to save U-M approximately $80,000 annually in facility operating expenses.

The planning process was led by the design firm of Carl Walker Inc. The design will be compatible with the architecture of the existing Thompson Street Parking Structure and will blend into the surrounding neighborhood.

On its Division Street face, the structure will feature a glass stair tower that will signal its presence. The apparent height of the parking structure will be reduced because of the large set-back distance from South Division Street. The perceived mass of the parking structure further will be reduced by the new two-story office building, which will be constructed in front of it. The office portion is scaled to blend with buildings in the surrounding neighborhood, and features brick and glass accents.

The Thompson Street structure is one of seven Central Campus parking structures that accommodate approximately 4,500 spaces for U-M faculty, staff and visitors.

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