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Posted at 10:06 AM ET, 02/17/2011

U Md. wants Campus Drive open to cars

By Luke Rosiak

The University of Maryland intends to keep Campus Drive open to vehicle traffic, officials said this week, the school's Diamondback newspaper reported.

Administrators used the slow summer months to try out something that has been a goal of campus leaders for decades: Converting the thoroughfare into a more college-friendly promenade for pedestrians and cyclists.

Making the change permanent could also have created a clear path for the Purple Line, which planners envision passing through College Park as it connects Bethesda and New Carrollton.

"We are recommending that Campus Drive remains open," Assistant Vice President for Facilities Management Frank Brewer said at a review of the Facilities Master Plan. "It will remain the status quo."

But the decision will not preclude the Purple Line from being built down the center of campus, Brewer said, according to the Diamondback. "We will make any alignment work. Even Campus Drive."

By Luke Rosiak  | February 17, 2011; 10:06 AM ET
Categories:  Prince George's County, Purple Line  
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Comments

The Purple Line is all about real estate developers. UM has a shuttle bus system; Prince George's County has The Bus. The Bus needs enhancement, as does Metrobus. Let's put $ into what we have and make it better. Purple Line would just lead to rezoning battles, homes, apts. and businesses destroyed. And the thing would still run on the surface, have to cross streets, add more and more overhead wires to get damaged during ice/snow/wind.

Posted by: catbird500 | February 17, 2011 12:17 PM | Report abuse

The solution UVA employs to controlling traffic on McCormick Road, the street that runs through Central Grounds, is pretty effective. There are gates in two locations along the road. The gates are down during the day on weekdays (I forget the exact hours, but they generally coincide with the hours when pedestrian traffic is heaviest) and they're up on the evenings and weekends. When the gates are down you can still use the road to access the car parks or for handicapped drop-off and the like as long as you enter from the intersecting street closest to your destination, but you must then exit the same way from whence you came, as only vehicles with special transponders (University transit and maintenance vehicles, for the most part) can pass through the gates when they're down, unless of course you don't care about the damage you'd do to your car if you drove through them.

It worked pretty well as a means of controlling thru traffic and promoting pedestrian and cyclist use while also allowing vehicular access to some important places. It was also always very amusing to see the tourists who ignored the signs saying "No Thru Traffic" who would drive up to the gates and sit there staring as though they expected the gates to rise for them. We used to yell at them to beep their horn three times.....some of them were suckers enough not to realize we were messing with them.

Posted by: 1995hoo | February 17, 2011 1:45 PM | Report abuse

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