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City Planners OK 'Ferris Wheel' Parking Structures

City Planners OK 'Ferris Wheel' Parking Structures image
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The erection of three mechanical car parking devices at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital was approved by the Ann Arbor Planning Commission Tuesday night. The commissioners voted 6 to 2 to recommend approval of a site plan to City Council calling for placement of the 85-foot-high parkmobiles on land adjacent to the hospital The machines will be built on what is now a parking lot and will increase the parking capacity from 179 cars to 234 cars. The machines are built on the ferris wheel principle, allowing vehicles to be placed in a slot and then lifted into the air for storage. Advantages of this type of parking over the conventional lots or parking  struetures include conservatiönf space, the five-hour construction time and no capital investment. The machines cost $87,000 each, and each can park up to 22 cars. One of the major concerns of the commissioners in approving the site plan was the lack of aesthetics of the steel frame apparatus. However, it was noted the parkmobiles will be used at the hospital for only about three years until St. Joseph relocates to a site in Superior Township.