Consultant Jeremy Marquis of Marquis-Halback Design suggested to the St Augustine City Commission Monday night that they consider a deck of underground parking beneath Francis Field; one of several proposals proffered as part of a plan for a federally-funded program to improve traffic flow to connect the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument to the remainder of St Augustine.
Marquis said the Francis Field underground parking deck could provide 880 of about 1,400 additional parking spaces needed to satisfy peak demands for parking throughout the year.
“Castillo visitation is around 700,000 people each year, up 20% in the first five months of 2013,” Marquis told the commission.
Marquis suggested, as part of the evaluation process, that city officials establish priorities, gather public input, and then, move on to permitting and construction.
A four-deck parking facility on Malaga Street, adjacent to the Flagler-FEC Towers, could accommodate as many as 600 additional vehicles.
Marquis also suggested that the city make Spanish Street one-way north, and Charlotte Street one-way south. Presently, vehicles travel Treasury Street eastbound from Cordova Street to Charlotte Street. Marquis suggests interrupting traffic at St George Street; forcing through traffic north on Spanish Street.
Another design change suggested by Marquis was to create curb-less streets in the historic preservation district — brick streets for traffic and coquina sidewalks for pedestrians.