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Mount Clemens — Macomb County has unveiled a new $9.5 million parking structure that will serve county employees and the public in downtown Mount Clemens.

The 600-space structure, under construction since May 2015, will replace an aging parking facility on the north side of the Macomb County Circuit Court building.

County Executive Mark Hackel was joined by several top county officials, including Sheriff Anthony Wickersham, Clerk Carmella Sabaugh and Chief Deputy County Executive Mark Deldin in a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday to officially open the new garage.

Hackel said it’s the first phase of a $65 million redevelopment project that includes the renovation of a county building at the north corner of Main and Cass, the opening of new office space in the administration building, and renovations to the courthouse.

“We’re not just putting Band-Aids on buildings that need more than a Band-Aid fix,” Hackel said.

The new garage will be free for Macomb County employees but the public will be charged $1 an hour. Motorists who park in the garage will have access to an underground walkway that connects the administration building, county building and courthouse along Main Street.

“As you can see, (it’s) an absolutely incredible facility here that I think adds an aesthetic value to what you’re seeing here in downtown Mount Clemens,” Hackel said. “We are making it look a heck of a lot prettier.”

Deldin said the county plans to close the old parking structure — which was built 40 years ago — within the next month. Officials are accepting bids from companies to tear down garage, Deldin said. Demolition is estimated to cost around $1 million.

The county has not decided what it will do with the land.

“We were being proactive as a county and we ended up building a new parking structure because we knew that we had to take the old parking structure out of service,” Deldin said. The new garage is “a modernized structure and it’s much more efficient.”

Hackel said the county is looking to work with the city of Mount Clemens and business owners to make downtown more attractive for visitors and employees who may want to enjoy the area after work.

He said he also is interested in bringing housing to downtown, something that could help increase property values around the city.

nterry@detroitnews.com

(313) 222-6793

@NicquelTerry

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