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$9M parking garage ‘exciting day’ for city

Posted on Wednesday, May 10, 2017 at 9:20 am

By Ken Jackson
Staff Writer
It’s not that a new parking garage opened up in downtown Kissimmee this week.
It’s that another piece of the city’s transportation hub, non-existent but in the minds of planners and on the drawing boards of engineers as early as three years ago, has taken shape.
The Intermodal Parking Garage, one piece of the Intermodal Facility that includes the existing

News-Gazette Photo/martin maddock
Operations Officer of Collage Construction Rob Maphis hands the keys to the newly constructed Intermodal Parking Garage over to Kissimmee Mayor Jose Alvarez at the ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday.

Lynx bus transfer station and a SunRail station and platform under construction, officially opened Tuesday.
Ground broke on the $9 million station in fall of 2015, and a Florida Department of Transportation paid for all of it, outside of the city donating the land and paying for the permits, which City Manager Mike Steigerwald said was about 1 percent of the cost.
“And now it’s here, and the SunRail station is coming along, It’s an exciting moment,” he said. “This is an effort that began in the early 2000s. This brings all forms of transportation into one hub.”
To that end, former members of the City Commission who saw it start were able to see it open Tuesday. Former Mayor Jim Swan and Osceola County Commissioner Cheryl Grieb attended.
Current Mayor Jose Alvarez said he hoped completion of the project would continue to spark new mixed-use development in the area.
“What an exciting day for our city. We continue to grow and there’s no stopping us,” Alvarez said. “We’re grateful to FDOT for funding and construct it and it furthers the relationship between FDOT — my old bosses — SunRail, and the city.
“Citizens and visitors will be able to use the garage at no cost, such as for our future circulator bus program, which will quickly move riders around the downtown area.”
In addition to the transportation hub, the garage will serve those using CityCentre, Lakefront Park, the Civic Center and the to-be completed Mosaic Toho Square redevelopment project.
The four-story garage has 398 parking spaces on four levels, including a rooftop deck, electric car charging stations and LED light that dims when the garage is empty. The historic design will complement all the SunRail designs.
SunRail is expected to arrive in Osceola County in July 2018. It has been delayed numerous times due to federal funding and approval issues, but FDOT spokesperson Steve Olson said earlier this year that required testing of signals, new equipment and infrastructure in and along the Phase II South corridor and running trains for added testing and to set the schedule have also put the project behind schedule.


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