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$53M Science Drive parking garage in progress

Phases of pre-construction are underway for the construction on the new $53 million parking garage on Science Drive.

The parking garage, located on Science Drive and Cameron Boulevard, is being built to help alleviate the growing demand for parking on campus—with approximately 2,200 students, faculty and staff currently on the parking waiting list. The Board of Trustees approved plans to build the garage in May 2014, with an original start date of August 2014.

"This is a very strategic component of our overall traffic and parking plan,” Kyle Cavanaugh, vice president for administration, said in a Duke News press release. “The placement of the garage is consistent with the parking master plan to place more parking on the outside of campus and move to a pedestrian space inside campus.”

Fencing has already been placed to section-off 3,000 feet around the 751 Lot and R. David Thomas Center, where the garage will be built. According to the 2014 Facilities Management Project Summary, the location of the garage will be strategic in expanding peripheral campus parking while still providing connections to Duke and Durham’s bus transit network. In addition to creating 2,320 spaces—more than the current number of people on the wait list—it will feature a mix of green space and hardscape, with hundreds of trees and shrubs.

The garage will also add parking access in the athletic facilities area of campus and provide additional spaces to graduate students, including Duke Law School and Fuqua students who have classes in the area.

Alongside the construction of the garage, there will be many changes made to adjacent roads to minimize traffic congestion. Changes include the addition of two stops to the current C3 Science Drive bus route—both immediately outside the garage. These stops will allow buses to pull over to the curb to drop off and pick up passengers, instead of stopping in the middle of the road and disrupting traffic.

Efforts to expand parking throughout campus, however, are being matched with plans for new buildings and overall expansion throughout the University. According to Cavanaugh, these competing projects will create even more demand for parking in the future.

"As we continue to grow over the next couple years, surface parking availability, will become increasingly constraint,” Cavanaugh said in the release.

The construction plans for this area of campus are some of many scheduled for the 2014-15 academic year. Other notable projects include renovations of the Chapel, construction of the West Union and changes to the entrance of the Bryan Center.

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