New parking garage proposed for the Orion Amphitheater

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The popularity of the Orion Amphitheater has prompted the City to build a new parking garage at the venue. (Michael Seale/Hville Blast)

Anyone who has been to a concert at Huntsville’s Orion Amphitheater since it opened a little more than a year ago can attest to how amazing the venue is for live music. But those same people likely will have some complaints about parking at the venue.

Well, the City of Huntsville has a solution, in the form of a new parking garage at the Orion. Here’s some more info:

New parking garage

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The City of Huntsville approved the purchase of 3.5 acres for the new parking garage. (City of Huntsville)

The Top of Alabama Regional Council of Governments will relocate its offices at MidCity District as part of a land swap with the City of Huntsville to provide more parking at the Orion Amphitheater.

TARCOG will vacate its 3.6-acre property next to The Orion in exchange for a one-acre site at the southeast corner of MidCity. TARCOG plans to build a new facility on the property to continue serving its five-county region.

Here’s what we know about the new parking garage:

  • 1,000 to 1,200 parking spaces
  • 4 stories
  • Located along Amphitheater Drive at Corporate Drive
  • Plans also include a small surface lot alongside the parking garage for handicapped parking
  • Construction is expected to take about 14 months

“Having adjacent parking will help public safety, traffic circulation and minimize pedestrian interaction with vehicles. Since we don’t need the entire site for parking, we can develop the remaining parcel with retail, food and beverage to create a revenue stream for the City’s tax base.”

Shane Davis, Director of Urban & Economic Development

The City Council approved an agreement to help cover some of TARCOG’s replacement costs and donate the land for a new facility. While the one-acre land swap will be at no cost, the City will provide TARCOG $8 million in assistance to help with the new TARCOG center.

The move allows the city to complete its master plan to build the parking deck for Orion Amphitheater operations.

The Orion has taken off

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Since it opened last spring, the Orion has attracted some huge acts. (Michael Seale/Hville Blast)

Davis said the parking deck and completion of Apollo Park are the City’s last planned public infrastructure investments at MidCity.

While city officials surely had some idea as to how the Orion Amphitheater would take off as far as popularity is concerned, the growing number of concerts and events at the new venue has been spectacular.

Over the next month, the Orion will host Snoop Dogg, James Taylor, Smashing Pumphins, the Doobie Brothers and more big-name acts (and that’s just part of the August lineup) and has already hosted the likes of Phish, Stevie Nicks, Jack White and Jason Isbell, among others.

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Michael Seale
Michael Seale
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