Mayor Pro-Tem says parking will not be the end of depot project


AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – It was all about bringing jobs downtown. In 2015, Augusta Commissioners approved a resolution to provide Unisys 500+ parking spots on the depot site. But what impact will this 4 year old resolution have on the future development of this site?

Supporters say the Depot project, $90 million dollars of housing and retail, is not going to go down because of parking.

“It’s not dead at all. This is, unfortunately when people are against it, they are going to do everything they can to try and stop a project. This project is firm, the financing is there, everything is there,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Sean Frantom.

Except enough parking for Unisys.

In 2015, to help bring 700 jobs downtown, commissioners passed this resolution to provide Unisys parking spaces on the depot site. This was before Commissioners agreed to put $14 million dollars into the depot project.

“This whole process has the continuation of having been done backward and it’s costing us now. First and foremost we got to still find those 500 parking spaces for Unisys that we have not done,” says Commissioner Ben Hasan.

The Depot project is planning a parking deck but only 175 spaces for Unisys.

The 2015 agreement give the city the option of developing the site but says the city must relocate Unisys Parking to a multi story parking lot constructed by Augusta

“The city is going to have to put more money into a parking deck on site?”

“We don’t know that yet. We have to talk to Unisys and see what their needs are. If we have 175 in the first phase, maybe we increase it and do it in the second phase,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Frantom.

Though Mayor Pro-Tem Frantom is optimistic about the future of this project, he does agree there is work that needs to be done. That’s why all parties are planning a sit down this Friday to get everything on the table.

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