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WSU has its own plans Western Avenue

Date: 12/12/2012

By Carley Dangona

WESTFIELD — In the wake after the city's announcement of plans to overhaul of Western Avenue, new information was uncovered regarding the level of Western State University's (WSU) involvement in the project.

Reminder Publications acquired documents sent from WSU officials to the city that details a list of improvements the university would like considered in the street renovation project, which includes the section from Mills Street to Bates Road.

The papers state, "These improvements will provide for better traffic control and access to the university and will provide for a safer roadway."

The following are some of the suggestions:

•Re-routing all utility wires underground

•Improving the storm drainage system along the entire roadway

•Providing better lit sidewalks along each side of the street

•Creating left turn lanes at the Horace Mann Center, Woodward Center and Parenzo Road entrance

•Replacing multiple sections along the sidewalk on either side of the street

•Incorporating the redesign of the Laura Drive and Western Avenue intersection as proposed in the North Campus Road Project; and

•Relocating the Southern Slopes access road.

Other requests include crosswalk refurbishments, traffic signal improvements, integration of emergency call boxes and enhanced landscaping along the roadway.

Of the $2.5 millon available for the project, $2 million was furnished by WSU, after it redirected money from its budget from a previous road project. The funds must be spent within the footprint of the college.