The parking garage that is to be built in Dublin's historic district is taking shape.

A more detailed design resulted in more total parking spaces and a higher cost estimate for the planned historic district parking garage, and Dublin City Council opted to stay the course.

Council members June 12 voted 5-2 to keep the garage at four levels and 549 spaces. It would be a $12.79 million project that is about $1.7 million more than the initial allocation planned for in the city's Capital Improvements Program. Council also approved a terra cotta exterior that increases the total cost by $650,000.

The initial plan for the parking garage was 450 parking spaces in four stories with an $11.08 million budget, with the city paying $10 million and the Columbus Metropolitan Library system paying $1.08 million.

Terry Foegler, Dublin's director of strategic initiatives and special projects, said that plan was based on early sketches the library system's design team generated a couple of years ago.

The plan was a place holder until additional design was completed by architect Moody Nolan, he said.

The library system plans to construct a new $18.6 million, 42,500 square-foot, three-level building that would have twice the square footage as the current Dublin branch library. The library system has agreed to pay for a portion of the parking garage's construction based on 200 parking spaces designated for library patrons.

Foegler said city staff members prepared garage-construction cost-saving options for council.

"We had those just in case council wanted to consider those," he said.

Those options included:

* Elimination of 63 spaces on one side of the garage, for a total cost savings of about $500,000, or $8,000 per space lost.

* Removing a portion of the first level that would require removal of subsurface rock, for a loss of 27 spaces and a savings of $205,000, or $7,600 per space lost

* Removing a portion of the fourth level, for a loss of 45 spaces and a savings of $417,000, or $9,300 per space lost.

* Removing the entire fourth level, for a loss of 149 spaces and a savings of $2.38 million, or $16,000 per space lost.

Councilwoman Christina Alutto said she was in favor of the fourth option, because it was the most cost-effective.

Councilwoman Chris Amorose Groomes said she was not in favor of spending more money for additional parking spaces.

Both Groomes and Alutto voted against keeping the garage at 549 spaces and four floors.

Mayor Greg Peterson, Vice Mayor John Reiner and council members Tim Lecklider, Amy Salay and Michael Keenan voted for the four-level garage.

The garage's extra spaces would be produced in a cost-effective way and maximizes the city's flexibility to address future parking needs in and around the Historic District, Foegler said.

A construction schedule could be released for the garage within the next couple of weeks, Foegler said. He estimated the project would likely be in design for the remainder of the year.

Council's next decision regarding the library will be to allocate funding in August for the project in the Capital Improvements Program for 2018 through 2022.