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New student housing coming to Normal, but some concerned about parking

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The reason why some opposed a new 126-bed student apartment had nothing to do with housing, the issue actually had to do with parking. Specifically -- how many parking spaces this new building would have.

The property owner wants to demolish three buildings and replace them with one, large apartment building. Elizabeth Megili represents property owners and managers who have property near the planned complex. She argued the new building would make an existing parking shortage worse.

"Locust street already sees substantial on-street parking, rarely are their available spaces...and our concern is that adding beds will exacerbate this problem," said Megili.

Current codes require 95 parking spots. But the owner, the Iden family, is asking for an exception -- to only create 84 parking spaces, and make room for a circle drive for ride sharing drop-offs and deliveries.

"That part of the vision was to have that circle drive to have a warm place people could be dropped off out of the rain, out of the snow, out of the traffic," said Russell Arbuckle, the architect behind the project.

The project was approved 7-0, with several council members commending the project for being forward-thinking.

Another topic discussed Monday night, a three percent raise for city manager Pamela Reece. The raise was approved but not before councilman Stan Nord abstained, citing he did not have enough information to vote. 6 of the 7 members voted for the raise.

Andy Weber

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