This project involved providing parking for 490+ vehicles, an enclosed passenger waiting area, passenger shelters at five new and existing bus stops on campus, a solar panel array that will result in a net-zero electricity use for the building, and the relocation of West 23rd Street and two University rental properties. In total it provides a net gain of approximately 281 parking spaces on the site. In addition, the project provides a central location for off-campus residents and visitors to park and have access to the University transit system/Panther Shuttle and the Metropolitan Transit Authority routes, which serve the cities of Cedar Rapids and Waterloo. The re-design of West 23rd Street complements the City of Cedar Falls’ efforts on its streetscape project for West 23rd Street and the adjacent College Hill area.
The design of the parking deck accommodates a future expansion of up to two additional levels of parking over the on-grade parking on the north side of the site. The design and massing of the facility are sympathetic to the University of Northern Iowa campus architecture, specifically the adjacent brick residence halls to the south. The structure is built into the slope of the site, minimizing the scale toward the residence halls, with brick elements organizing the south elevation: elevator shaft, transit pavilion and linear retaining wall. The south, east and west elevations are screened with a perforated panel in a copper color – screening views of the cars in a material chosen to complement the context.
The University has worked with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the City of Cedar Falls on the project, which has been funded partially through Intermodal Transportation Funds. Approximately 80% of the funds for the project have come through the FTA grant, with 20% of the funds from the University and the City of Cedar Falls. Based on current parking rates, the business plan indicates a positive cash flow and adequate funds to provide for future maintenance and renewal.