The Fly has just learned that it will cost at least $6 million to construct the proposed 300-space municipal parking garage on North Walnut Street. This estimate excludes related property acquisition costs (add at least another $1.245 million) and site remediation costs (unknown at this time).
The projected costs are based on the currently accepted industry standard construction rate of $20K per parking space. However, since there are already 100+ surface parking spaces on North Walnut Street, construction costs will substantially exceed $20K per parking space when viewed on a “net spaces gained” basis.
Furthermore, an Executive Vice President of one of the most prominent commercial real estate development firms in North Jersey recently advised The Fly that estimated annual carrying charges for such a facility could approach $1 million (includes salaries, utilities, debt service, insurance, etc.).
The Fly continues to question the wisdom of constructing a multi-million dollar parking facility, several blocks from Ridgewood’s train station, on a “Field of Dreams” basis. Are Village Council members absolutely certain that when they build it, people will come?
The Fly thinks that this project has all the potential of becoming “Ridgewood Village Hall, The Sequel.” That is, a fully taxpayer funded money pit.