Public works project slows Pierce traffic
April 18, 2011 —
As construction on Pierce Road continues, many visitors to campus are finding it necessary to give themselves a little extra time in the morning.
Work crews have restricted a small stretch of road surrounding the south campus and Campus Village entrances to one lane. The zone is generating criticism among students.
Brittany Mastej, psychology junior and Campus Village resident said, “I think it’s really inconvenient. It’s really hard to pull out [of Campus Village] when you can’t see the traffic coming. I don’t even know what they’re doing.”
What they’re doing is part of a $1.1 million public works expansion project extending the Kochville Township sewer system to include the SVSU lift station by way of a pipeline being established along Pierce. The pipeline will stretch from the station all the way past Bay Road.
In effect, township officials hope to reduce the annual maintenance and repair costs by improving the system’s gravitybased infrastructure, not by creating new lift stations, but by connecting the system to existing ones.
The addition of the SVSU lift station to the system is projected to save Kochville township up to $300,000. The expansion, which aims to create a more efficient and easier to maintain system, will benefit residents. The redesign of the sewer main, specifically in the area surrounding the Pierce and Bay intersection, could potentially assist in business development within the township. The plan also likely relieves SVSU of the responsibility of maintaining and repairing the lift station, which could save the university thousands of dollars.
The drawback for students and faculty is that construction crews won’t be leaving soon. Kochville township office manager Neil Hammerbacher estimated that work on Pierce will continue into summer.
The south campus entrance is used by many and traffic during peak hours has become an issue for some students.
Computer information systems junior Christopher Loftis said, “Traffic is always clogged up by the university police entrance so it makes using that way almost impossible.”
In the meantime, commuters can utilize either the Davis or Bay Road entrances to avoid the congestion. Those who live in the Campus Village have limited options.
The walkway between Campus Village and the main campus remains clear and, as work progresses further down Pierce, driving in and out of those entrances should become less cumbersome. For the time being, students and faculty should exercise caution within the construction zone and factor in a few extra minutes of travel time.