We're trying to figure out if we've ever heard of a high school with a six-story parking garage, and the answer is no, we haven't -- until today.
Today we learned that St. Thomas High, right here in Houston, will be having a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday for its new, humongous, parking garage.
"The parking situation at St. Thomas is that we're a campus that is so land-locked, the garage was thought to be the best option," school spokesman Michael Balhoff tells Hair Balls.
The Eagles' campus, at the corner of Shepherd and Memorial, is indeed surrounded by development and can't grow.
So they had nowhere to go but up for their 433-car garage. (Balhoff didn't have a dollar figure available, but is getting it for us.)
Most of the largest high schools in Texas are, of course, out in the burbs where there's plenty of land to expand, so a parking garage isn't generally needed.
But there are landlocked HISD schools -- there's no way Lamar's expanding their footprint, for instance -- and no one's proposing six-story parking garages for them.
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The edifice will be built on the current open space that students use to park; some confusion and juggling is expected when it comes to parking during construction. The garage is expected to open next year.
Update: There appears to be a veritable wave of parochial-school garage-building in the offing, according to one St. Thomas official.
"Duchesne's parking garage is either just completed or will be very shortly," he said. "IWA [Incarnate Word Academy] is planning on building a parking garage shortly. I also heard that St. John's was making plans to build one."
It's a parking-garage arms race!!