LEWISTON — Parking is the biggest concern for city planning officials when it comes to Bates College’s plan to build two student dormitories along Campus Avenue.

The Planning Board on Monday recommended approving the college’s dormitory project with a number of conditions, most related to parking, sidewalks and property easements.

“Parking has been a hot topic every time we discuss Bates College,” said David Hediger, deputy director of the Planning and Code Enforcement Department.

City councilors are scheduled to review the project at their Aug. 12 meeting.

“My guess is parking will come up at this City Council meeting, as well,” Hediger said. “It’s a big building. It’s a four-story building, and things are going to look different out there.”

The college plans to erect two buildings with about 230 beds at the southern edge of the campus. One will be built between Bardwell and Franklin streets, the other between Franklin Street and Central Avenue.

The Central Avenue building will have public retail shops, possibly a bookstore and a coffee shop. The western building will back up to Bardwell Street, creating a plaza along Franklin Street.

The Planning Board called for the college to provide on-campus parking permits and to register student vehicles with Bates Security. Students with parking permits who don’t use college lots would risk losing their parking privileges. It would also require the college to create a transportation committee.

The board also recommended against a request to close Franklin Street to cars. The college wants to make 130 feet of the road a pedestrian-only area starting at Campus Avenue.

“They want to provide pedestrian safety and a pedestrian walkway to provide better connectivity between the two new buildings,” Hediger said.

“The Planning Board recommended the street stay open,” he said. “It doesn’t kill the project, from the city’s perspective, one way or the other. Bates will just have to tweak their plan, but it shouldn’t change it too much.”

The dorms should be ready for the 2016-17 school year, if the project gets city approval.

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