As we pursue the revitalization of the West Milwaukee Street area in downtown Janesville, I would like us to pause for a minute and consider a possibility for parking: a three- or four-story parking ramp in the half-square block encompassing the former Town and Country building and the city parking lot behind it.
A parking ramp here would serve multiple purposes. In particular, it would provide parking for people attending events on the adjacent festival street, the charter school a half a block away, YMCA tournaments and other special events across the street, downtown residents (particularly during snow emergencies) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) when it has training classes for electricians and business owners and customers.
Perhaps the owner of the Town and Country building, the Blackhawk Community Credit Union, would reconsider its plans for this building and, as a community service, either donate or sell the property to the city for a reasonable price.
This is an opportunity to make it easy for people to attend events in our downtown area. I have worked downtown for 35 years and owned a business on the west side of the Rock River for 21 years. I am thrilled with the progress in revitalizing our downtown and applaud the progress we have made.
I believe this is an opportunity that we should pursue, one that would heavily contribute to our downtown being a great place to work and visit.