The city is considering building a new public parking garage — between 13th and 14th streets and M and N streets, or kitty-corner from the State Office Building — and has hired Walker and Davis Design to look at the feasibility of the site.
The Sharp Building, on the northwest corner of the site, will remain, but the city is considering using the rest of the block, which includes surface parking lots and a private parking garage that will be torn down.
The city garage would contain around 700 to 900 parking stalls, with commercial retail or office space at the street level, according to a contract with Walker Consultants for the $65,500 feasibility study.
The city plans to keep a skyway access between the Stuart building and a new parking garage, according to the consultant contract.
The owners of the Sharp building have an option to purchase the two surface lots and own the parking garage, and city staff hope to make a decision on that site in July before that option ends.
City staff have been looking for a garage site that would serve the southeast downtown area for at least five years.
The city would use revenue bonds for construction. An 800-space garage, with first-floor retail, would cost an estimated $25 million, according to Wayne Mixdorf, the city's parking manager.
The state is also considering building a parking garage between 17th and 18th, L and K streets, where it is putting in a well field for a Capitol heating and cooling system.