Orange fences, blocked roadways, and confused faces are a common sight on campus this semester.
This is due to a proposed ten year plan that will make many changes all over the Millersville University campus.
The goals, as stated by the proposed plan available on the university website, for this massive construction project are:
To accommodate an increase in Graduate students as well as an increase in undergraduate programs.
To address traffic and parking issues.
To improve athletic facilities and address current and future needs.
To improve deficiencies in facilities and infrastructure.
There are many proposed steps to achieve these goals and they are arranged in three phases.
In the first phase, which involves the first five years of work, one of the plans is to address pedestrian and vehicular traffic.
According to the plan the campus will become a pedestrian campus, in which walking is the preferred method of travel between destinations.
Safety is the main issue with pedestrian traffic. The plan will minimize the frequency of pedestrian and vehicle conflict.
East Fredrick Street will be closed to vehicles in phases and eventually the creation of a pedestrian mall will be located there from George Street to Pucillo Drive.
The proposed plan also notes that this area can be used for vehicle traffic in case of emergency as well as move in and move out days.
This will encourage pedestrian crossings off of the George Street and Fredrick Street intersection and move them to the Shenks intersection that holds a pedestrian island.
Until the shift is made, campus police will be directing traffic and pedestrian crossings.
The southern end of George Street will be closed passed James Street to allow a pedestrian path and plaza to be built at that location.
Plans also include the creation of more pathways to deter pedestrian movements away from parking lots and into safer areas.
Another section includes building additions, renovations, and other campus wide improvements.
Some of these improvements involve the replacement of Lenhardt and Burrows halls with new “living-learning Residence halls” on either James or Prince Street, or kept at their current location.
Improvements will occur in Lyle Hall dining due to a projected increase of residents on the West Academic commons, as well as improve the Southern Quad through landscaping around the field and adding recreational courts between the buildings.
One of the visible changes that started this summer include a removal of the existing traffic light at the intersection of George Street and Fredrick Street, and the implementation of stop signs at this intersection.
This is just one step in the proposition for this intersection.
Sidewalks along these roads will be widened for new traffic signals as well as better roadway lighting.
The new traffic light will have pedestrian countdown timers and vocals for the visually impaired.
There will also be a “red-light pedestrian scramble” mode where all four sides of the light will be red and pedestrians will cross whichever way they need to go.
This will eliminate the dangers of road crossings for both
pedestrians and drivers.
Other important changes in phase one of the plan will include renovations and an addition to the Student Memorial Center, as well as renovations and additions to the Visual and Performing Arts center.
Ganser Library will also be receiving a renovation and entrance addition.
Mechanical maintenance will occur at Jefferson Hall while Brooks Hall will also be renovated.
In phase two, which covers the next five years up to the ten year mark, a visitor’s center will be built on the corner of George Street and Cottage Street.
Additionally, work will be made in phase two on Pucillo and its athletic fields.
A practice facility will be built at Biemesderfer Stadium and Chryst Field.
Adding two new buildings on the East Academic Commons is also in the plans as well as a conversion from electric to gas energy and will have a central electricity plant for the campus.
Phase three will cover any additional years past the ten year mark and will include the building of Centennial Drive Residence Halls and Centennial Drive road alignment changes and surface parking.
More information about the SMC renovation can be obtained by visiting the center and inquiring at the information desk.
Additional information and details about the construction plans can be obtained on the Millersville University website.