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Jackson firm to design downtown parking garage

By By Sheila Blackmon/The Meridian Star
Nov. 7, 2001
Meridian councilmen approved a contract Tuesday with Dale and Associates Architects of Jackson to design the Riley Education and Performing Arts Center's new downtown parking garage.
The $7 million garage will be built on the city block between Seventh and Eighth streets and 23rd and 24th avenues. It is the city of Meridian's contribution to the project.
BankPlus, Lawrence's Jewelry, Jack's Sandwich Shop and the old Royal theater and the old Troy building will be torn down, though some of the businesses plan to relocate. The city acquired the properties for $487,000, and BellSouth and Trustmark National Bank agreed to trade properties for reserved daytime parking spaces in the new garage.
City leaders are not sure if the old BellSouth building on the corner of Seventh Street and 23rd Avenue will be incorporated into the garage design or if it will be left standing. It could be used to house other city offices, such as community development offices or the Meridian Police Department.
According to the contract, Dale and Associates will be paid $117,765 for Phase I of the project. Phase I includes a downtown parking analysis, financial assessment study, an operations assessment study, an environmental assessment, pre-planning meetings and studies of the BellSouth building.
Phase II will include designing the garage. It also includes the bidding process and construction, both of which Dale and Associates will oversee.
The firm will also be paid 6 1/2 percent of the total construction costs, estimated to be $369,500 and including about $12,000 in travel expenses. The contract allows up to $24,000 in reimbursable expenses. The entire project is not to exceed $7 million.
Sheila Blackmon is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call her at 693-1551, ext. 3275, or e-mail her at