WMU News

New traffic signals mark entrance to CHHS

Aug. 26, 2005

KALAMAZOO--Faculty and students returning to the Western Michigan University campus for the fall semester are discovering an improved roadway leading to the recently completed College of Health and Human Services building.

Ottawa Street, opposite Wheaton Avenue at Oakland Drive, has been widened and reconfigured to serve as the main entryway to the CHHS building, as well as the Kalamazoo Psychiatric Hospital.

The project included the installation of traffic signals at Oakland Drive for motorists and pedestrians to ensure good traffic flow in the area around the new WMU facility. Bike lanes, sidewalks and lighting were also added along Ottawa.

The street reopened to traffic Thursday, Aug. 25, following a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony. Speaking at the event were state Rep. Alexander "Sandy" Lipsey, Kalamazoo Mayor Robert Jones, WMU President Judith I. Bailey and Janet I. Pisaneschi, dean of the College of Health and Human Services.

During their remarks, the speakers noted that the road project reflected the increased activity taking place on WMU's new Oakland Drive Campus.

"We needed five (traffic) lights at this entryway because our campus is growing," Bailey said. "These improvements were much needed, and they result in a much safer intersection."

The reconfigured Ottawa Street also leads to the Bronson School of Nursing building, which is scheduled for new uses now that the CHHS building is completed, and new parking areas that will be available to Bronco fans during home football games.

Collaborating on the Ottawa Street project were the Michigan Department of Transportation, city of Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo State Psychiatric Hospital, and WMU. Hurley & Stewart served as the engineering firm for the project while Bailey Excavating & Grading served as the general contractor. Both companies are located in Kalamazoo.

Media contact: Jeanne Baron, (269) 387-8400, jeanne.baron@wmich.edu

WMU News
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