EPS plans parking lot on Independence

This property on the northwest corner of Independence and Park will become a parking lot for Enid Public Schools. (Billy Hefton / Enid News & Eagle)

Enid Public Schools has plans for a new parking lot along South Independence. The property just north of EPS' Administrative Services Center, where Sturdevant Ice and a diaper store previously sat, is just a dirt patch for now, but within a year could be a roughly 60-spot lot.

The current construction schedule is preliminary, EPS communications director Amber Fitzgerald said, but expected completion time is December. Design work is expected to wrap up in May, and the project bidding process in June.

"The new parking lot will provide the Administrative Services Center, Special Services Center and Instructional Technology Building with additional parking for teacher professional development workshops, board meetings and special community events," Fitzgerald said.

Parking runs out on busier nights, said Michael Shuck, EPS director of facility construction, sometimes causing people to leave their vehicles across the street in the grass. This project should help fix that, he said.

EPS purchased the diaper store property in July for $107,363 and Sturdevant Ice in November for $395,369, according to EPS. The diaper store was demolished in October 2018, and Sturdevant in January 2019.

The properties were purchased using excess sales tax revenue from a 2003 voter-approved measure, she said.

The diaper store was not in operation at the time it was purchased, Fitzgerald said, and the owner of Sturdevant Ice was retiring.

The design of the lot will be in keeping with the rest of the parking in the area, Shuck said, and although it is EPS property, it often will be open to the public.

"It's our parking lot, but we're going to be a team player here," Shuck said. "We'll try to make it look real similar to what the city's already done there so nobody knows any different."

An estimated price tag for construction hasn't been determined, Shuck said.