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City mulls $30M plan for Millennium Library parkade repairs

City Hall is considering a plan to put $30 million worth of upgrades into the Millennium Library parkade to keep it open.

Public Works Committee Chair Janice Lukes says she supports the renovations.

“Yes, it’s a significant amount, a huge amount, I feel they’re necessary to do,” said Lukes.

The Winnipeg Parking Authority is recommending nearly $15 million in high priority repairs be referred to this year’s budget process for consideration. The remaining work would be done between 2028 and 2030 to extend the lifespan by 25 years.

The 480-stall parkade, built in 1974, needs structural repairs as well as lighting, electrical, and mechanical upgrades.

Other options were being explored including selling, demolishing, or building a new structure.

The parking authority said this is the most financially sound choice. It also said this ensures there is secure parking connected to the skywalk available for library patrons and fans headed to Jets games and concerts. Lisa Patterson from the parking authority said Saturday’s Jets game sold out, and so did the parkade.

“People are still driving downtown, they’re still parking in the parkade, it’s close proximity to Canada Life Centre and surrounding area,” said Patterson.

Outside the library, patron and bus rider Tony Carriere feels the money could be put to better use.

“Go towards homeless shelters, go towards refugees, something that actually builds this city,” said Carriere.

The parking authority said the parkade will compliment future economic plans including a transformation of Graham Avenue.

It said it has a wait list for monthly passes and demand is strong for daily parkers, as annual net revenue is at or near pre-pandemic levels at close to $1 million.

“I feel that the amount of revenue that can be generated out of the parkade merits the investment,” said Lukes. 

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