The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

City Owes Parking Garage Company $57.8 Million

By Chuck Sudo in News on Mar 21, 2013 7:40PM

Photo credit: Helene Smith

We already knew Richard Daley’s parking meter deal is costing the city a pretty penny, but now the Sun-Times reports a parking garage deal the former Elective Majesty made will also set city taxpayers back some change.

An arbitration panel ruled against the city in a complaint filed by Chicago Loop Parking LLC, which holds a 99-year lease on four city-owned downtown parking garages, claimed the city violated the terms of the lease by approving plans for a garage in the Aqua building, one block from the nearest garage managed by the company.

Because the panel’s ruling is binding, the city owes Chicago Loop Parking $57.8 million and should feel lucky the judgment isn’t more. Chicago Loop Parking originally sought $200 million. Corporation Counsel Stephen Patton said the city is looking at what options they have to reduce the burden to taxpayers.

Let’s add this to the growing tab the city owes Chicago Parking Meters LLC $61 million for lost revenues due to street closures, road construction and handicapped parking placards, the $27.3 million (and counting) spent to settle lawsuits against the city and the nearly $80 million in bonds the city borrowed to cover the cost of a lawsuit settlement over discriminatory hiring practices at the Chicago Fire Department. Chicago Parking Meters has also taken its dispute to an arbitrator. Both Chicago Parking Meters and Chicago Loop Parking are owned by consortiums organized by Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners.

Someone tell us again why privatizing city services is a good idea?