UMass Boston has started construction on the campus’s first free-standing parking garage as envisioned in the campus master plan. The new garage will be located along University Drive West near the Monan Park baseball complex.
The university broke ground on the parking garage at a ceremony on January 26.
The 500,000-square-foot garage will house up to 1,400 parking spaces on eight levels including dedicated spaces for carpoolers, electric vehicles, and persons with disabilities. A high-capacity indoor bicycle storage room will be located on the ground floor. Design details are being finalized on the façade, which will be enhanced with colorful elements.
The garage is designed to handle peak commuter traffic during morning and evening hours. The layout will include three vehicular entrances and three exits, two pairs of elevators, and stairs for pedestrians. Traffic at garage exits will move more quickly thanks to the introduction of validation via pay-on-foot machines, with payments collected before drivers enter their vehicles. Electronic smart signs will notify drivers of available parking on different levels.
Site preparation, including soil removal, has begun. Crews will drive more than 300 piles up to 200 feet into bedrock throughout the winter. Vibration monitoring will take place. Soil management procedures will adhere to monitoring plans developed with the university’s Office of Environmental Health and Safety and the Department of Environmental Protection.
The garage is targeted to open in approximately one year. The UMass Building Authority is financing the $71 million project, which is designed by Fennick McCredie Architecture and will be built by Suffolk Construction. The owner’s project manager is Skanska.
Other elements of the garage project have been planned and designed, and will go before the Board of Trustees for approval soon. These include a pedestrian bridge, a separate building for the Department of Public Safety, and amenities supporting the nearby athletics facilities.