A portion of East Frederick Street on campus has been closed to conduct a survey to see if the area should become a pedestrian walkway.

“The why behind that closure is the University’s facilities master plan,” says Thomas Waltz, assistant vice president of facilities at Millersville. Waltz, along with others met with the Student Government Association on Jan. 24 to discuss the closure. “Creating a more pedestrian friendly campus is part of the master plan. However, it’s important to note that capital projects are a long term endeavor, from five to 10 years, and plans can change,” says Waltz.

The University is updating the current facilities master plan. A new science center will most likely be the next major project and would be adjacent to the proposed walkway. In addition, there has been discussion of a new parking structure where Roddy Hall and Caputo currently sit.

“Imagine a multi-level garage with an ADA complaint elevator that provides access from the academic core to Pucillo Gymnasium. With all of those changes, the pedestrian walkway makes a lot of sense,” says Waltz.

“Student, faculty and staff involvement is critical in the planning process,” says Waltz. “When you hear about open forums or are asked to fill out a survey, please participate. Your input is extremely valuable in forging the future of the university.”

“The temporary closure of East Frederick Street between High School Avenue and Creek Drive is designed to assess the traffic patterns on campus to determine the feasibility of this walkway,” says Waltz.  “We appreciate the Borough’s continued cooperation and willingness to keep the road closed until Fall 2019 semester.  It was important that this study occur during the semester so the University can get a full picture of the traffic patterns when classes are in session and students are on campus.”

This closure eliminates 34-36 free borough parking spaces, which the University acknowledges is not ideal for commuters. Waltz and others are in conversations with the Red Rose Transit Authority (RRTA) to enhance shuttle service around campus. Currently the Prince Street Garage near Jefferson Hall runs around 20 percent capacity. On a recent Tuesday morning at 9 a.m., there were more than 200 spaces available. The enhanced shuttle service would make it easier for students to park there and take the shuttle to class.

Waltz wants to keep the conversation going and will join a group of students to meet and discuss commuter concerns as they arise. Information will be disseminated to the wider University community as it becomes available.

 

 

This article has 1 comment

  1. What is your suggestion to students who do not have a parking pass and relied on those spaces for street parking? Those who scheduled early classes two days a week knowing that for countless years before those spaces were open for free public parking?

    Additionally, in consideration of those students who were not prepared to essentially lose access to all street parking, a notice greater than 4 days before the semester began would have been logical and shown at least some form of concern for commuters.

    EDITOR’S NOTE: Those scheduling early classes two days a week can still locate free parking on or near campus, one location is by the water tower on Cottage Ave. This location is closer to the academic buildings on the north side of campus and is on the free campus shuttle route which drops off in front of McComsey and also by Breidenstine and Osborn.

    The Borough and Manor Township control parking regulations on their streets. Millersville University encourageS commuters to park on campus, but understand some may choose to find street parking on municipal roads.

Leave a comment