Back Campus Drive converted for bike, pedestrian traffic
CARROLLTON, GA – The University of West Georgia is moving forward in its efforts to not only serve its students, faculty, and staff, but to also integrate with Carrollton’s pedestrian and bike infrastructure. As students returned to campus this fall, they found the perimeter of West Georgia Drive had undergone a bit of a transformation with the addition of bike lanes.
A campus committee was formed in the fall of 2014 to look into the possibility of a bike program at UWG. The committee is co-chaired by Brendan Bowen, assistant vice president for Campus Planning and Facilities, and Mark Reeves, assistant vice president for Auxiliary Services.
Mark also reached out to the local community for participation on the committee. Representatives from the city school system, Tanner Health System, city government, and Friends of the Carrollton GreenBelt joined in.
“As part of its current strategic plan, the University of West Georgia has committed to developing sustainable modes of transportation for those who live, work, and learn on our campus,” Bowen said. “Our objective is to decrease single-occupant vehicle use by promoting alternate modes of transportation – walking, biking, and public transit.”
Campus Planning and Facilities partnered with Parking and Transportation Services, the community stakeholders, and design partners to develop a safe and efficient infrastructure for biking on the campus.
The committee retained the Toole Group, a traffic engineering firm, to study traffic on the campus in order to develop a master bike plan. The design firm of Kaizen Collaborative then developed drawings for bike lanes around the perimeter of West Georgia Drive. The plan replaced parallel parking on West Georgia Drive with dedicated bike lanes.
“This perimeter bike lane will ultimately connect to the 16-mile Carrollton GreenBelt, as well as downtown Carrollton and the athletic complex,” Brendan added. “As part of the strategy the promote clean transportation, UWG also rebuilt Back Campus Drive into a beautiful pedestrian and bike-safe plaza in the summer of 2015. These initiatives are part of UWG’s plan to create a sustainable campus that will serve the higher education needs of the region for generations to come.”
UWG employee and Carrollton City Council candidate Rory Wojcik, who also sits on the UWG Bike Committee, uses the bike lanes daily and says he’s excited about their installation.
“With the integration of the new bike lanes on campus, the city culture is beginning to shift from an automobile-centric town to a community that encourages cycling,” Wojcik says. “Bike lanes and multi-modal transportation trails, like the Carrollton Greenbelt, promote different transportation options among residents. This mindful planning of transportation helps connect the UWG community with locally owned businesses and residential areas throughout Carrollton.”
The University of West Georgia is the land of opportunity more than 12,000 undergraduate and graduate students in 86 fields of study. The university is known for its innovative approach to scholarly achievement, creative expression, and service to humanity. It is recognized by U.S. News & World Report magazine as the #47 public university in the South.
Founded in Carrollton, Ga., in 1906, UWG also offers classes at its Newnan and Douglasville centers and online. For more information, please visit westga.edu.
Press Release – Amy Lavender with UWG