Normal Avenue Parking Structure (Parking Structure 2):

Features and Renderings

See the short video made by CSU Chico students.


University Police Department; Environmental Health and Safety; and Campus Information Center


Additional Features:

  • 78kW photovoltaic array with trellis and infrastructure to expand
  • 10 electrical vehicle charging stations
  • Heating and cooling system 20% more efficient than required
  • Water efficient fixtures
  • Drought tolerant plants
  • Low e-windows
  • Occupant sensored energy efficient lighting system
  • White interior walls and ceiling (in parking structure)
  • Open/Full capacity sign at structure entrance
  • Recycled materials used in concrete
  • LEED Gold


Solar Panels on Parking Structure
Parking Solar
Parking Structure from 2nd and Chestnut Streets

 parking #1

Project Description:

The Normal Ave. Parking Structure project includes the design and construction of a four-story structure with 359 automobile parking spaces, 11 motorcycle stalls, and 242 bicycle parking stalls, and a single-story administrative building. The office building will be along 2nd Street to create a lower profile along this busy corridor.

Project Schedule:

Planning and Design: September 2010 to December 2011
Estimated Construction Start Date: January 2012
Estimated Construction End Date - Parking Structure: August 2012
Estimated Construction End Date - Office Complex: October 2012

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: With California coping with a budget deficit, how can we afford to pay for a parking structure?

A: This project is possible because the majority of the money does not come from the state. The budget for the 2nd Street Office & Parking Structure is $14,200,000. This budget is made up from different sources of money:

  • Parking Structure-$10.5 million, Non-state bond, paid back with parking revenues
  • Parking Structure-$2.0 million, Non-state campus reserves
  • UPD Relocation-$1.0 million, State funds from the Taylor Hall Replacement Project
  • UPD & Admin, Offices-$400,000, State campus reserves
  • Energy Efficient Lighting-$300.000,Energy project funding

The state has rules that dictate how we can spend these different sources of money. Unfortunately, we cannot spend the non-state money to lower tuition or pay for staff or faculty salaries.

By law, all CSU system parking programs are required to be self-supporting enterprises, with no reliance on state funding. This means that the money to build the parking structure does not come from the state it comes from revenue generated from campus parking programs.

Q: How does a parking structure fit in with Chico State’s commitment to sustainability?

A: Chico State is proud to be a leader in sustainability within the education community. The facts (and studies) show that Chico State has only 1,900 parking spaces for nearly 18,000 student, faculty, staff, and guests—the lowest in the CSU system. The 2009 Transportation Demand Management Plans says additional parking is needed along with our alternative transportation efforts – “The need for a comprehensive multimodal transportation system is evident.”

Furthermore, over the past 5 years, the campus has reduced, by more than 400, the number of parking spaces. Most of the spaces were eliminated because we were no longer able to lease the parking lot on the northwest corner of Chico High school, but others were removed because of new and remodeled facilities (the WREC, Sutter Hall, Student Services Center, Gateway Science Museum, Creekside Plaza, and the remodel of Colusa Hall). Additionally, another 173 spaces will be removed with the Arts and Humanities and parking structure projects for a net loss of over 550 spaces. The new parking structure will add 330-370 spaces, but we will still have a net reduction from five years ago.

Additional sustainability efforts:

  • University pays for every student, staff, and faculty member to ride the B-Line bus for free
  • The Zip Car program provides a car sharing service for campus
  • Covered bike parking will be designed into the new parking structure
  • The new facility will be built to LEED Silver (or equivalent) environmental standards
  • We will continue efforts to reduce the number of freshman bringing cars to campus
  • New bike lockers - spring 2011
  • New bike lanes on 1st & 2nd Streets (partnering with the City)
  • Reduced CO2 with less “circling the block”

Several energy-saving features are planned for the office and parking structure project. Up to 10 battery plug-in stations are planned for electric vehicles. The electricity for these recharging stations will be generated by photovoltaic units on the structure's roof, so users will not incur a cost, nor will the stations increase the campus's electrical load. Also the structure will have special lighting, already in use at UC Davis, that comes to full strength only when motion is detected. The light dimming during low-activity hours will save the campus electricity.

Q: How can I voice my opinion?

A: As part of the construction of the new Office and Parking Structure the University is required to follow California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) guidelines. As required by CEQA, the campus has a consultant preparing an Initial Study, which includes a traffic study. As part of this process there is a 30-day public review and comment period. This period is February 17 to March 18, 2011.

Check back in late February for the Initial Study/Mitigated Negative Declaration and how to submit your comments. 

Q: There are rarely enough parking places, especially on Tuesdays and Thursdays. When will the additional parking spaces in the new project be available?

A: You will have to wait a couple of years until the new parking spaces are available. It will take about a year to plan and design the new office and parking structure—most of this will occur during 2011. It is the hope that the project will be shovel ready by January 2012 and be complete December 2012.

Q: Why build a new parking structure now?

A: The new parking structure has had a place in the Campus Master Plan for many years. The schedule of the new 2nd St. Office Building & Parking Structure was orchestrated to coincide with the demolition of Taylor Hall and Yuba Hall (a 50 year-old “temporary” facility) and the displacement of the University Police Department. This new parking facility will provide a new centralized home for the police department.

The project also will take advantage of the changes the City is making to 1st and 2nd Streets next summer. Our project will capitalize on the City’s traffic calming efforts and benefit from gaining an additional eight feet on 2nd Street that will allow for bike lanes and wider sidewalks.

Q: If there were better bicycle paths to campus, this would help reduce the demand for parking. How are you going to improve the bike paths to campus?

A: The University is working with the City of Chico on bike lanes on 1st and 2nd Streets. This will be developed with the City’s new traffic calming projects: implementation starting summer 2011. Development of these bike lanes should lend to increased bike usage. The campus is also partnering with the City to move the on-street parallel and diagonal parking into the parking structures and keeping eight additional feet open for bike lanes and wider sidewalks for pedestrians.

Q: Will this just be another typical looking parking structure?

A: One of the design goals for this project is to create a friendly human scale office building along 2nd Street and then the parking structure will step up towards the middle of the block. Taking this approach will fit in with the other buildings and uses along 2nd Street. Every effort will be made through design and materials to make the project aesthetically pleasing and not look like a traditional multi-level parking garage. There are two other projects being planned at this time, the Arts and Humanities Building and 1st Street Promenade—these two projects in conjunction with the 2nd St. Office & Parking Structure will make 2nd Street an important gateway to campus. Normal Avenue and Chestnut Street (at 2nd Street) will become important cornerstones for the campus. Both corners will be redesigned to welcome people to campus.

Q: I am not a student and I don’t work on campus; can I park in the new parking lot?

A: Yes, the parking structure will have a parking permit dispenser in which guests (and students, faculty, and staff) can purchase a pass by the hour or for the day. This prime location will accommodate visitors to the campus or the downtown Chico area. Patrons of the arts will benefit with this new structure because of its close proximity to the Performing Arts Center, Laxson Auditorium, BMU Auditorium, and the new Arts and Humanities building, which will have a 200-seat performance space. The new parking structure will also have an information center to supply up-to-date information about events on campus.

Additional Info

2009 Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Plan

2005 Campus Master Plan

Letter of Support from David Burkland, City Manager, City of Chico

Letter of Support from Joel Zimbelman, Dean College of Humanities & Fine Arts

Project article in Inside Chico State