The recently opened PG6 offers the convenience and security of this bridge to the Engineering & Computer Science Building.
Maria C. Serrano/Staff Writer
The opening of PG6 at the university’s main campus brings hundreds of new spaces for commuters. More than that, the garage brings new, smart technology to parking on campus.
The PG6 structure enables the integration of license plate recognition with a car counting system, which allows the FIU Department of Parking and Transportation to push parking availability in real time.
The communication of the parking availability will be through the FIU mobile app, which could be found on the app store, and through variable message signals located in boards in the entrances of PG6 — saving drivers time searching for an empty space.
According to Thomas Hartley, executive director of the FIU Department of Parking and Transportation, such communication platforms are still in construction. These platforms are expected to be in function in the upcoming weeks.
“Beyond just building the garage, we are launching a smart garage,” Tom said. “The new garage enhances ease of access and ease of parking throughout the university, all while reducing traffic congestion and the need to hunt for a parking space.”
Even though PG6 took nearly a year to construct, it has lightened the lives of drivers at the Modesto A. Maidique Campus and has provided over 2,000 additional parking spaces.
“Sometimes I’ve waited around 20 to 30 minutes to park,” Sileirim Ortega said, a sophomore majoring in finance.
“I see a really big relief here because the parking lot itself is bigger and more comfortable to drive.”
The FIU Board of Trustees approved the construction for the PG6 building in March 2011, yet it did not receive approval from the State of Florida Division of Bond Finance until late June.
The project needed reauthorization due to change of building location from the southeast side to the north side of the University, in addition to funding concerns and analysis data requested by Governor Rick Scott in February 2013.
The technology in the PG6 building also has the possibility of gather current utilization data to forecast future needs.
According to Hartley, the PG6 location was strategically planned and because it was next to the main entrance, it provided the University with easy access from the main thoroughfare.
There are also upcoming projects that can be aided by the opening of PG6.
“This location also provides needed parking in a rapidly growing area,” Hartley said. “Especially with the additional medical buildings coming in line.”
The parking garage is located west of the Red Parking Garage and features a bridge to the Engineering and Computer Science Building. Much like PG5, it includes 35,000 square feet of shell space for university-related retail space and classrooms.
In addition to PG6 and to better the commute in and out the FIU eighth street main entrance, 10th street was widened from 109th Avenue to 112th Avenue. A traffic circle was also added at 112th Avenue.
“PG6 has so much space around and it’s way better. I like it and it’s where I park all the time,” said Ortega. “I love the bridge. You just cross by and you don’t have to be looking for traffic, so it is very convenient for everyone.”