The construction of Western Carolina University’s first structured parking facility, between the Ramsey Center and Hennon Stadium, has begun.

The 1,000-space parking deck will include three levels, including space for tailgating before athletic events. The facility will become the university’s primary parking area for commuting students, offering shuttle service to the center of campus.

The site was a parking lot before construction began. WCU has adjusted to the lot closure by supplying an additional 760 spaces for the upcoming fall semester.

One lot is located across from Norton Residence Hall and includes 100 spots. Another is across from the Health and Human Sciences Building and supplies 237 spots. The third is situated across from Judaculla Residence Hall and adds 423 spaces to the campus inventory.

The original plan was for construction to begin after the December 2018 commencement ceremonies with completion scheduled by fall 2019. However, delays occurred in the preparation of design documents in fall 2018 that made a December construction start unrealistic.

This comes as WCU experienced increased enrollment in fall 2019 and the demolition of Scott and Walker residence halls later this year. The completion of the parking deck is expected by April 16.