Projects planned in 2013 could continue to whittle away parking space availability downtown, but the Williamsport Parking Authority apparently is planning ahead.
The authority Wednesday discussed the plan for the spring demolition of Mid-Town Parking Garage, a 300-space facility built in the early 1970s, as well as possible sale of a lot on Via Bella to create elderly housing.
"We're going to be making recommendations and will have to come up with some alternatives," said Dr. Anthony J. Cipolla, chairman of the authority.
SUN-GAZETTE FILE PHOTO
The Mid-Town Parking Garage will be razed.
Should City Council approve the plan by an as-yet unidentified buyer of the 45-space lot at Via Bella and Mulberry Street, the city will have to relocate monthly parkers. The lot is known as Lot H.
Another parking lot under consideration that might be sold is an oddly shaped triangular space that primarily is used by Christ Episcopal Church on Sundays and Lycoming College on Mulberry Street. It's known as Lot P.
The authority agreed Wednesday to have William E. Nichols Jr., city finance director, prepare a letter of intent of interest to be sent to the church, college and anybody else interested in possibly buying the parking lot.
The possible sale of Lot P is not yet in the bid process stage.
Again, Mid-Town garage came into play.
"My recommendation would be not selling it until after Mid-Town is razed," Cipolla said. "If we can't get the appraised price, we may entertain the offer by the church, which wants to see improvements made to the lot, such as adding landscaping."
As for the demolition of the downtown parking garage, Nichols was asked the timetable for razing it and the construction of the Trade and Transit II Centre, a building that will replace it to provide as many or more parking spaces as well as space for possible retail outlets on the ground floor.
Demolition of the garage, which is owned by River Valley Transit, won't begin over the winter to make it easier on those walking, Nichols said.
"It can be built in nine to 10 months," he said.
But Nichols wasn't certain about what to expect when excavation begins.
"We expect some remediation," he said.