overgrown lot with the deteriorating house, at the
corner of Mill and Park Avenue, has been purchased to
become a new city parking lot. The total cost of the
project after all reimbursements from the Cobblestone
Hotel, the Mineshaft and the Hartford BID, would be
about $193,000. The city’s Public Works Committee
approved the proposal on Tuesday night. It will now go
before the Common Council for final approval.
HARTFORD — A proposal to
increase parking in the city’s downtown was recommended unanimously
by the Common Council’s Public Works Committee during the group’s
regular meeting at City Hall Tuesday night.
In the fall of 2018 local merchants requested the city review the
downtown parking shortage. City Administrator Steve Volkert said
city staff reviewed where additional parking might be available and
convenient for downtown customers.
“A location was found at the corner of Mill and Park Avenue,”
Volkert said. “The owners of the property were made an offer and
they accepted the offer to sell.”
Volkert said the nearby
Cobblestone Hotel and the Mineshaft
restaurant as well as the downtown Business Improvement District
agreed verbally to help finance the conversion of the residential
property into a municipal parking lot. The site currently has a
dilapidated two-story home on it along with a yard that is heavily
overgrown with weeds, trees, shrubs and other undergrowth.
“The net estimated total cost of the project to the city is $193,000
after all reimbursements are collected for the three other parties,”
Volkert said. “These funds would come from the originally allocated
$1 million the city approved for downtown improvements in 2015.”
Adjacent to the new parking lot is a gravel-surfaced parking area,
owned by Thomas Masters who also owns the nearby Mineshaft. Private
citizens are already allowed to park in the lot owned by Masters.
Part of the deal with the city regarding the new parking lot is that
Masters’ lot will be given an asphalt surface when the adjacent new
city lot is completed. Both of the lots will then have parking
stalls marked and painted.
“The new lot will give us about 42 additional parking spaces and
with the spaces available in the other lot (owned by Masters) there
should be a total of 86 parking stalls,” Volkert said. “Part of the
agreement with the hotel is that some stalls (eight) are to be
reserved for overnight parking by hotel customers.”
The deal with Masters was part of a separate parking easement
“The agreement with the seller of the property will allow the city
to take it over as of July 31,” Volkert said. “Work can begin right
after that on demolition of the structures on the site. All of the
work could have the lot ready for use by October.”
Alderman and committee member Dennis Hegy asked Volkert about
landscaping for the new parking lot site.
“Might you consider some plantings of some kind on the lot?” Hegy
asked. “It’s going to look pretty barren there when everything is
Volkert said they would take a look at possibly doing something to
beautify the parking lot area, but couldn’t say what that might be
at this time.
As part of the parking lot construction new lighting would also be
added in both parking lots. The proposals must still go before the
Common Council for final approval, which could come at the group’s
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