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Construction disrupts commutes during first weeks of classes

By Abby Schlueter

As two main campus roads continue to be closed or limited to traffic, the campus community is left to adjust to an increased commute for the first month of classes.

The construction on Fourth Street, between Daniel and Armory, has been taking place since the end of May, though it recently switched from the northbound to the southbound side. This closure is expected to conclude on September 16th, just under a month after classes began.

However, this construction has caused issues even for students and faculty who don’t drive. The detour for this route sends cars down Armory Avenue: a popular street for students who bike and walk from apartments located to the west of Fourth Street.

An increase in traffic on this road has caused multiple instances of close calls with cars narrowly avoiding pedestrians as they cross the street. It has also caused backups at the intersection of Fourth and Armory during class transitions where students cross the street no matter what cars are headed their way.

The construction on Gregory Drive, between Arbor and Euclid, has caused another kind of issue. This street serves to connect bus routes from the southern shuttle parking lot to Ikenberry Commons, a popular route for students heading to class.

However, the project that started on August 29th has derailed those routes and has left the Ikenberry Commons stop abandoned. Students have had to find alternative routes to class without the luxury of two bus lines right outside their doors.

This closure is set to end on September 6th after a disconnected storm sewer is repaired. The sewer was causing flooding on nearby streets and intersections after heavy rains.

While this project is set to finish quickly, no warning was given to residents of the area before work began. As Arbor and Euclid are both one-way streets, the detours have caused confusion for commuters who travel down the wrong roads to avoid construction.

As the work concludes on these projects, it is likely that other roads on campus will be next on the university’s list of road improvements. Students just hope the next projects won’t make them wake up earlier for a longer commute.

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