New Lot C parking structure construction kicks off with groundbreaking

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Elena Perez

El Camino president Dena Maloney and members of the board of trustees take a hand at the ground breaking for the new Lot C parking structure, marking the beginning of the new construction on Monday, April 18. The new parking structure is scheduled to be completed in about a year. Photo credit: Elena Perez

UPDATE 4/21: Changes made to improve clarity at 11:35 a.m.

Construction officially started Monday afternoon on the new $26 million Lot C parking structure that will add 1,443 parking spots to the El Camino campus.

Members of the board of trustees stood alongside EC president Dena Maloney and trustee Mary Combs as they shoveled dirt with golden shovels, officially starting the $26 million construction project.

The new parking structure is taking the place of the former Technical Arts Building that was demolished last semester to make way for the new lot.

“This is really a milestone event; campus parking, no matter what campus you’re on is always the issue,” Maloney said.

She added that the project is funded by Measure E, which is a facilities bond that passed in 2002, and some bonds from the latest measure passed in 2012.

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A construction worker verifies blue prints for columns of the new Lot C parking structure on Monday, April 18. Work is progressing rapidly on the new parking structure and construction should be completed in about a year. Photo credit: Elena Perez

The new structure will have four levels, and director of facilities Tom Brown spoke about how long construction will take.

“We’re hoping to have this (Lot C) completed within the next year (or) year and a half,” Brown said.

To the east of Lot C will be a new Student Services Center, taking the place of the old Shops building. Construction on that building has not yet started as the college does not have a contractor to build it.

“We hope to go out to bid next month. We probably won’t start construction on this (Student Services Center) until August,” Brown said.

The new Student Services Center will also house the Special Resource Center, which will be more accessible to students with its close proximity to the new parking structure.

Construction of the Student Services Building is expected to last two years if started on schedule in August, Brown said.

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A construction worker operates heavy duty equipment preparing the foundation for the new Lot C parking structure on Monday, April 18. The new parking structure will be completed in about a year. Photo credit: Elena Perez

Both projects will make a new entrance on the north side of campus. Traffic signal improvements will be made to Manhattan Beach Boulevard as part of the project, and Brown says the driveway into campus will be much wider than before.

“It will be a much more predominate drive into this one, with a turn around with handicap drop-offs,” Brown said. “This will have two lanes and will be more conducive for students.”

Brown says the new traffic pattern at Manhattan Beach Boulevard and Lemoli Avenue will be similar to the pattern at Lot H and Stadium Way.

Board of trustees president Ken Brown spoke about how important it is to keep the community involved in projects like these.

“It’s always important to do ribbon cuttings and groundbreakings because the community needs to know where their money is going,” Brown said.