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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Parking Garage Groundbreaking Celebration

On Jan. 26, Chancellor J. Keith Motley and the University of Massachusetts Boston administration invited the campus community to celebrate the groundbreaking of the university’s new parking garage.

Due to the cold weather, the event took place inside the Integrated Science Building rather than outside on the actual construction grounds.

In his speech, the Chancellor described the overall transformation on campus over the past years as an “amazing thing” that will benefit the university for the decades to come. Apart from the academic buildings and the dormitories, this new and first free-standing parking garage will satisfy the ongoing demand of UMass Boston students and staff. Motley said that providing new parking spaces on campus was “long overdue” and has therefore been a priority in the planning process.

The office of Fennick McCredie Architecture has designed this building. Their company has already designed construction for educational facilities, such as the South Campus Garage at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, several buildings as the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and the Harry A. Gampel Pavilion at the University of Connecticut. Regarding the parking garage at UMass Boston, Fennick McCredie used their experience to design a modern and efficient complex. For example, the facade will feature colorful metal elements, as well as a design that makes it possible to handle the traffic at peak commuter times in the morning and the evening. The actual construction will be carried out by Suffolk Construction. The project development and construction group Skanska will be in charge of managing the process.

However, the Chancellor also emphasized that this building will not simply be a parking space, but an investment in increasing the value of the university. “One of the most incredible assets you can have in Boston is parking,” he noted. The city, with its growing population, is known for its lack of parking spaces and its high fees at garages.

The new “Parking Garage West” will be located directly on campus grounds along University Drive West next to the Integrated Science Complex and Quinn building.

The complex will be 500,000 square feet large and will feature around 1,400 parking spaces which will be distributed among eight levels. The new garage will consist of regular parking spots, spaces for carpools, electric vehicles, and drivers with disabilities. Furthermore, the building will also provide an indoor storage area for bicycles on the ground floor.

Chancellor Motley also pointed out that the parking garage will boast “cutting-edge technology” that will allow for drivers to navigate with ease with newly installed electronic smart signs displaying available spots. Additionally, customers will be able to pay in a quick manner with electronic smart signs and pay-on-foot machines. In total, the building will cost around $71 million. The UMass Building Authority is funding this project.

According to an official UMass Boston press release, the construction is expected to be completed next year in early 2018.

As a hopeful and enthusiastic look into the future, the Chancellor described this new parking garage as “one that you can be proud of to put your vehicle in.”