BLOOMINGTON – The replacement Fourth Street Garage will be open for parking starting Monday, August 23.
The environmentally certified structure provides parking for more than 500 vehicles (with dedicated spaces for accessible, compact, and electric vehicles) and a covered bicycle depot; will house commercial/retail space, public bathrooms, and City Parking Management offices; and activate adjacent pedestrian plazas on its southern and western sides.
A dynamic art component integrated into the building’s facade will be installed by early October. The City will host a public event to dedicate the facility this fall upon completion of all components.
The garage replaces one built in 1985 that was closed at the end of 2018 after it was determined to be structurally unsound and unsafe. Concentrating parking within dedicated structures, allowing some surface parking to be eliminated or redirected into more productive uses–is part of the City’s overall strategy to accommodate motorists while reducing their environmental impact. The Fourth Street Garage and the new Trades District Garage are the first two garages in Indiana designed and built to achieve “Parksmart” certification, based on compliance with guidelines that reduce environmental impact, increase energy efficiency and performance, and manage parking spaces efficiently. The garage will feature solar panels and electric vehicle charging stations.
The design of the Fourth Street Garage was approved by the City Plan Commission on March 9, 2020 and construction began in July 2020. Funding for the project came from Tax Increment Finance (TIF) funds with approval by the Redevelopment Commission, the statutory body that oversees use of these funds. The source of TIF funds is the increase in property taxes generated on new development in that district. The sale of bonds for the project was approved by City Council.
Integral to the structure’s architectural design, custom artwork comprising almost 9,000 aluminum panels will be installed across its facade. Urban Fabric, a work by Project One Studio with fabrication by Ignition Arts, draws inspiration from the traditional art of quilting, representing the diversity and inclusiveness of the city through form, color, and pattern. This budget-conscious art element minimizes material waste through its fabrication process.
Funding for the artwork was provided through the One Percent for the Arts Ordinance (Bloomington Municipal Code section 2.12. 021), which stipulates that at least one percent of the cost of construction for selected capital projects be used for public art at those projects or elsewhere.
More information about parking options is available at Downtown Parking.