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Tallahassee Commission Nixes TPD Relocation, Midtown Parking Garage Plans

A row of Tallahassee police cars
Tallahassee Police Department Facebook

The Tallahassee city commission has decided to scrap two plans: one to develop more parking in Midtown, and another that called for the building of a new headquarters for the Tallahassee Police Department on the Southside.

Mayor John Dailey said it was time to start over, after public hearings on both plans saw large amounts of pushback and public criticism.

"I do think we should go forward with a more in-depth study...a complete master plan of the Midtown area," he said, regarding proposals that would create two plans for a parking garage for Midtown. Area business owners have said a lack of available parking has hindered visitation. Residents argue a garage would create more traffic and harm the character of the neighborhoods.

Later in the meeting, the commission opted to drop plans for a new Tallahassee Police Department headquarters on the Southside, after a surprise motion from Commissioner Curtis Richardson, who had been a big supporter of the project.

"We abandon the town south shopping center as a side for the law enforcement campus...consideration for out law enforcement campus," he said.

That project pit Richardson against County Commissioner Bill Proctor, who opposed the location.

Residents near Orange Avenue and South Monroe Street have largely spoken against the proposed headquarters. They're mainly concerned about the potential for a heavy police presence in a largely minority neighborhood, in addition to the displacement of local businesses. 

The site location houses one of two main grocery stores in the Southside. 

Gina Jordan is the host of Morning Edition for WFSU News. Gina is a Tallahassee native and graduate of Florida State University. She spent 15 years working in news/talk and country radio in Orlando before becoming a reporter and All Things Considered host for WFSU in 2008. Follow Gina: @hearyourthought on Twitter. Click below for Gina's full bio.