By Chris Riotta
It seems as though construction has been going on all over M-Square and the University of Maryland this year. The school has been ambitiously renovating North Campus and the research park throughout the summer, and due to weather and funding some of the construction has taken a bit longer then expected.
North Campus construction, which is redesigning the North Campus Denton community quad and pathways to and from the dorms to the education buildings, began early this summer. The work was supposed to be completed by the end of the summer semester, but has taken much longer than expected and no official end is in site.
For the M-Square research park, however, construction seems to be making significant headway. Reliable Construction Co., the company that is in charge of reconstructing the intersection at University Research Ct., says that work on the intersection will be completed by early November. The intersection is being redesigned to allow more efficient traffic flow and safer entrance onto River road. Sidewalks are being reconstructed as well to be parallel with the road.
A roundabout traffic circle is being created as the newly staffed NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction begins to implement more programs and employees into its headquarters throughout 2012 and 2013. This will presumably cause much more traffic to and from River road during normal rush hours, which is why the roundabout is being created.
While Reliable Construction Co. has made alternative pathways for traffic to and from the Research Square, north campus construction has seriously hindered foot traffic to and from the main parts of the university.
"It's like every single time you head back to North Campus, there's another road block!" Said Jessica Halverton, a junior engineering major.
"The construction has made living in Denton pretty unbearable this semester," said Mike McDermott, a sophomore community health major. "You have to take all these crazy paths just to get to the diner, and walking to class can be a pain when you wake up to find a huge fence blocking the main walkway right outside of your dorm."
The University has already said they plan to begin reconstructing some pathways on South Campus, which is much closer to Route One. This may very well affect traffic flow to and from campus. Earlier this year, the campus did some small construction on the main entrance to campus, which caused long delays in UM shuttle buses and, at times, heavy traffic into the university.
Photo by Chris Riotta