The city of Arlington’s downtown parking lot will be receiving improvements soon to re-pave the lot and make stormwater improvements.
The city-owned lot is between Third Street and Fourth Street, next to the Playa Bonita restaurant, with entrances from Olympic Avenue, Third Street and Fourth Street.
“The Merchants Parking Lot is getting a facelift,” said Kristin Banfield, communications manager for the city of Arlington.
The Arlington City Council awarded a bid for the project to Fidalgo Paving and Construction at their Aug. 5 council meeting.
“This project has been on the list for a few years now so it’s good that we’re able to get to it now. We’re happy to move forward,” said Banfield.
The city is using $180,000 of city funds that are used for streets and stormwater improvements for the project.
City staff is currently working with contractors to come up with a full timeline of how the project will be completed.
“We’re getting a full schedule put together now of the timeline,” said Banfield, however the contractor is required to have the project done in 20 days after work begins.
As part of the project the contractor is required to work with local businesses and the city to minimize the reduction on downtown parking.
“We want to reduce impact to the local businesses and preserve as much of the parking spaces as possible during the project,” said Banfield.
Improvements are being made to the area for a couple of reasons, said Banfield.
“There are two big challenges at the site right now,” she said.
The first is that stormwater can often pool up in the parking lot when it receives too much rain.
“The stormwater system is underserving the area,” said Banfield.
“We want to make sure that we have a system that is treating all of the water that comes from that parking lot,” she said. “When it just sits there, it doesn’t get treated.”
The frequent pooling up of water is not good for the lot either.
“The rain will pool up and it won’t go anywhere and that leads to the further degradation of the parking lot,” said Banfield.
The second major improvement of the area is to re-pave and re-stripe the lot.
“The condition of the lot is definitely something that needs to be re-paved,” said Banfield.
The city is planning scheduled updates to keep local businesses apprised of the progress of the improvements and potential impacts on downtown parking.