The city of Bloomington is moving forward with plans to boost parking in its certified technology park. The city has tapped Indianapolis-based CSO Architects to design the 300-space parking garage at the Trades District near the city's downtown.

The city says it has identified three potential sites for the garage. The next steps include hiring a construction manager early next month and gathering public input in April. The city council approved funding for the project in December.

Additionally, the city says it will soon begin a bidding process to begin renovations to the Fourth Street parking garage, which was closed in January after a structural assessment found "significant degradation" of the facility. The repairs needed for the garage, which include structural beam damage, strengthening joints, and waterproofing the surface, is expected to cost about $1.4 million.

"We’ve seen how critical the Fourth Street garage has been to downtown growth, and we know that growing the Trades District will also depend on our parking capacity there," said Deputy Mayor Mick Renneisen. "At the same time, climate change and shifting automobile usage demand that we reconsider current parking infrastructure design, so we’re committed to starting with a new, sustainable garage model in the Trades District, incorporating such features as solar panels, bike lockers, electric vehicle charging stations, and a level that can be converted to other uses if future conditions warrant."

The repairs at the Fourth Street garage are expected to be complete by early August, in time for the next academic year at Indiana University.