Making a $12 million bridge out of a molehill

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Making a $12 million bridge out of a molehill

Crosswalk Street City Pedestrian Zebra

Crosswalk Street City Pedestrian Zebra

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Crosswalk Street City Pedestrian Zebra

http://maxpixel.freegreatpicture.com/

http://maxpixel.freegreatpicture.com/

Crosswalk Street City Pedestrian Zebra

Kimberly Wilson, Opinion Editor

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The Board of Trustees and College of Dupage administration proposed the construction of a pedestrian bridge that would connect the second floor of the Health and Science Center (HSC) and the Technical Education Center (TEC). The bridge, which would be enclosed and climate controlled, would run across Lambert Road.

This new undertaking is being put forward in order to increase safety for students and to create a “one campus feel.” It is estimated to cost $12 million. Sure it would be nice not to have to brave the oftentimes inclement weather to go from building to building, but – especially for the money-we don’t feel this project is necessary.

If crossing Lambert Road is really a safety concern for students, rules prohibiting jaywalking could be implemented. A fine could be imposed on anyone who is caught doing the careless act. This would be a much more inexpensive way to improve safety and ensure people are paying attention when they are crossing the road.

Furthermore, several other universities in Chicago such as University of Illinois at Chicago, Illinois Institute of Technology-Chicago and DePaul University all have buildings that are on the opposite side of major roads. Students there manage to make the trek, sans an extravagant bridge.

Should COD spend $12 million to build an enclosed pedestrian bridge across Lambert Road?

  • Yes (0%, 0 Votes)
  • No. (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 0

Another thing to consider is that construction on a project this big would likely take months. This could potentially be a huge hassle to drivers and residents in the surrounding community. It would also disrupt classes near by the construction site, and for what? Students who don’t already go between those buildings aren’t likely to start on any consistent basis just because there’s a fancy new bridge. As for the students who do, we presume they know how to cross a road.

The college is in a good financial position even though the state failed to make appropriated payments amid the budget impasses. However, this doesn’t mean we should be frivolously spending on unessential projects. Especially when one considers the college may eventually need to dip into the “rainy day fund” as a result of declining enrollment.

Lack of parking is something that’s arguably a much bigger problem for many at the college. If the administration is going to spend millions on anything, it should be that. Expanding parking would solve a much more pressing issue and make coming to school more convenient for both students and teachers.

Building a multi-million dollar bridge for something that is, at best, a minor inconvenience seems a little overindulgent. Let’s be honest, crossing a road just isn’t that big of a deal. Don’t want to get wet by the rain? Buy an umbrella. It’s cold outside? Bundle up. Don’t want to get run over? Look both ways before crossing the street. Besides, a little hardship–if you can call it that–builds character, and isn’t that what college is all about?

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