6 story parking garage slated for downtown Nashville

6 story parking garage slated for downtown Nashville (Image 1)

The Metro Development and Housing Agency chose Nashville contractor RC Matthews to build a six story parking garage in downtown Nashville.

The garage will hold around 1,200 cars at the corner of 5th Avenue North and Church Street.

The city is in the process of buying the property from developer Tony Giarratana who originally planned to build Signature Tower on the site, which would have been the tallest structure in the southeast.

“There is a lack of parking in some areas downtown, particularly the core area north of Broadway and south of Charlotte,” said Bob Murphy, president of RPM Transportation Consultants, who did a traffic study of the area.

“In that area, there is a total of about 20,000 parking spaces,” said Murphy.

“In terms of the total downtown area, which is more than just that core area I talked about, there’s a total of about 52,000 parking spaces and we have about 50,000 employees that come into the area, and that doesn’t include the tourists who come downtown,” Murphy explained.

News 2 checked parking lots Tuesday afternoon and found most lots with empty spaces. Tourists who spoke with the station said they have no trouble finding places to park.

John Tackett, who lives downtown, said parking is not a big problem.

“I think they’ve got enough, I really do. I see lots empty, unless they have a special event,” he said.

Murphy, however, said his traffic count proved otherwise. He also said it will get worse as the downtown area continues to grow.

“The demands on parking are going to increase. Some of the places that are currently parking lots will be developed,” Murphy said.

The city will pay around $9 million for the property.

On Tuesday, MDHA chose R.C. Matthews as the builder.

MDHA executive director James Harbison told News 2 the parking garage will open Spring 2016 if things go according to plan.

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