Parking garage to close in January
One of Court Avenue's main parking hubs will close in January to make way for The Fifth, a much-discussed $107 million, 32-story high-rise planned for the corner of Court and Fifth avenues.
The 620-stall, city-owned parking ramp at Fifth Avenue and Walnut Street will close Jan. 15 and be torn down starting in April. The skywalk will remain open until demolition.
The Fifth will combine luxury apartments, movie theater, climbing gym, day care and nightlife venues across from the downtown Hy-Vee being built along Court Avenue.
Plans for the project include:
- 200 market-rate apartment units, ranging from studios to three-bedroom units, and 20,000 square feet of commercial space.
- A nine-screen, upscale movie theater with recliner seating and a new restaurant along Court Avenue. Main Street Theatres, known for the Aksarben Cinema in Omaha, is the proposed operator of the theater. The same business is slated to run the restaurant.
- A jazz club is planned for the opposite side of the building along Walnut Street.
- A rock-climbing facility.
Carrie Kruse, Des Moines' economic development coordinator, said the city is working with developer Justin Mandelbaum to determine who will cover the estimated $3 million cost to demolish the existing parking garage.
Plans call for a seven-story, 568-stall parking garage that's open to the public. Mandelbaum agreed to build the larger garage, as long as he broke even financially. To ensure this, the city agreed to help pay any annual debt payments on the garage that the ramp’s operating revenue does not cover.
The massive project, which was announced last year, took a big step forward in April when the city approved a preliminary agreement with Mandelbaum. The plan includes a stack of agreements and various city contributions expected to reach $25 million over the next 20 years.
Matt Anderson, assistant city manager, has said the agreement will ultimately add this property to the tax roll but also help the city get out of the parking business. And it will extend a portion of the skywalk to the north side of Court Avenue.
Construction is scheduled to begin in 2017, possibly as early as next spring. It will be a two-year project, with an opening planned for 2019.
A website is live for The Fifth, requesting information from potential residents who want on the waiting list.