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Pedestrian Safety Drives Campus Changes

To improve pedestrian safety and transit efficiency, NC State’s transportation department is instituting some changes across campus that will put into action its new Campus Transit Mobility Plan.

Beginning early in the fall semester, traffic flow on Dan Allen Drive will be restricted by installation of a pair of gates at the railroad tracks. Why? Because Dan Allen is a primary bus corridor for seven bus routes, says Brian O’Sullivan, assistant director for planning and operations. Due to increased congestion, buses are falling behind schedule. Also, more people are speeding and, with the Valentine Commons project almost completed, pedestrian traffic will only continue to grow.

Click for a larger version of an image showing an aerial view of the planned gates on Dan Allen Drive.

“Although our goal is not to inconvenience people who historically have traveled Dan Allen Drive as a north/south route through campus, we must do all we can to ensure safety for pedestrians,” O’Sullivan says.

The gates will restrict most through traffic on weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Only emergency vehicles, buses and university service vehicles will be able to pass through the gates. O’Sullivan offers drivers the following options: You can plan your arrival and departure times prior to 9 a.m. or after 5 p.m., change your route to avoid the gates or ride the free Wolfline bus.

“The only barrier is north/south movement under the railroad bridge,” says Tom Kendig, transportation director.

Western Boulevard Pedestrian Safety

Western Boulevard has also been a source of congestion. For years NC State and the city of Raleigh have discussed options to better serve the cyclists, vehicles and pedestrians passing through. Improvements are in the planning stage and should take a year, O’Sullivan says.

Street Markings on Hillsborough

To improve traffic safety, the city of Raleigh has made all the lanes on Hillsborough Street the same width. At the Gorman Street end of Hillsborough, the city of Raleigh also corrected an issue where two eastbound lanes squeezed into one lane. Now there’s a new island to channel cars turning right onto Hillsborough Street from northbound Gorman.

“The architects of campus always envisioned this being a pedestrian campus. All of these changes are a good step in that direction,” Kendig says.

Responses (2 Comments)

  • Suzanne Balik

    I work closely with a blind student. Quite often he finds his way on pedestrian paths obscured by vehicles parking on these paths. Please consider disallowing vehicle parking on pedestrian paths and sidewalks to make the campus safer and accessible for him and other pedestrians.

    Thank you.

  • Ken Tate

    I can certainly understand the intentions behind the Dan Allen gates, but I can’t help but wonder if they will have unintended consequences, such as causing much more back-up and congestion as unsuspecting drivers have to improvise once caught in the reroute. Time will tell…I hope it works!

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