Politics
8:42 am
Wed May 8, 2013

Parking poses problems for downtown Columbia housing complex proposal

Collegiate Housing Partners of St. Louis is seeking to build a 112-uniit housing complex near Mark Twain residence hall in downtown Columbia on Conley Ave. One issue standing in the way of the company’s plans is parking. The company wants to provide 115 parking spaces, but city code requires 300 spaces for a complex of this size.

Columbia Development Services Manager Pat Zenner said parking is an issue the city has yet to figure out.

“At this point we really don’t know how we’ll approach solving the problem that does exist," Zenner said. "But we’re very, very aware there is an issue."

Columbia’s planning and zoning commission will evaluate Collegiate Housing Partner’s request for reduced parking and the final decision will be left to city council. If denied, the parking requirements must be met and there is currently no alternative plan proposed.

According to Zenner, the growth in population of Columbia’s universities combined with student housing not being by economic downturn has allowed housing developers to continue making investments for projects like Collegiate Housing’s proposal.