Downtown Baton Rouge parking management contract down to three finalists

    Inching one step closer to the long-discussed, much-delayed goal of hiring a private company to manage its downtown parking facilities, the city-parish has narrowed its list of candidates from five to three.

    Kelvin Hill, assistant chief administrative officer, declines to name the three finalists, but says each will be asked to deliver oral presentations in the permitting office sometime in June, with a firm ideally selected by the end of the month. The winning company will have responsibility for managing downtown’s city-owned public garages, basement parking and surface lots.

    It’s been three months since the city-parish issued an RFP for downtown parking management, calling for a firm to 1) provide affordable, short-term parking for downtown visitors, 2) provide “clean, safe and convenient” facilities, 3) utilize “creative marketing strategies to increase revenue and attract new contract, event and daily parkers,” and 4) reduce operating expenses through efficient business practices.

    “The three firms we narrowed it down to were the ones that met those specifications the best,” says Hill, who oversees the public works department.

    Hill says he still isn’t sure how much money the city-parish would spend on the contract, adding the finalists’ presentations will clarify their responses to the RFP, including estimated costs.

    Meanwhile, two other bids related to “on-street parking solutions”—which includes the purchase, enforcement, collections and maintenance of 800 “smart” meters—are still up for grabs.

    Proposals for the purchase of the meters will begin being accepted June 20, says Veneeth Iyengar, assistant  chief administrative officer, while a separate RFP for the enforcement, collections and maintenance of the meters will go out “a couple weeks after June 20.”

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