WVU Medicine announced plans Wednesday to build two new parking garages and a new parking lot outside of Ruby Memorial Hospital, in Morgantown.
Construction on one of the garages, which will be located off of Willowdale Road, near Milan Puskar Stadium, is already under way. The garage will be six stories high and will have 810 parking spaces, officials said. It will have a pedestrian bridge attached to it, that will cross over Willowdale Road to the stadium. Vehicles will be able to access the garage from Valley View Avenue and Irwin Street. The construction will involve widening Willowdale Road to add a center turn lane into the garage. Utility poles will also be moved and a traffic light will be installed at the intersection of Willowdale and Valley View.
The roadway portion of the project is expected to be finished by June 2019.
Officials warn that there will be traffic delays, off hour lane closures and increased truck and equipment traffic throughout the Willowdale project.
The other garage will be built off of Van Voorhis Road, near the WVU Mountaineer Station. That garage is still in the planning stages and details are expected to be released at a later date.
Both garages are expected to be finished by 2020.
The new parking lot will be located where the Medical Center Apartments are currently being demolished. Construction on the lot is expected to begin in November. Weather permitting, the 385 spot lot will be available by the end of the year, officials said.
West Virginia University Health System President and CEO Albert Wright issued a statement about the need for the additional parking:
“Parking at Ruby Memorial has been a concern for a long time, and as we’ve experienced growth in our cancer, heart and vascular, neuroscience, and pediatrics service lines, it has become an even bigger challenge. The garages and the lot are being built primarily in response to employee feedback. Both garages will be designated for employees, and parking will continue to be free. By moving employee parking, the garages will allow more of the parking spaces in front of Ruby Memorial Hospital to be available for patients and visitors.”