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Portions of roads closed

Eva Binda | Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Three internal campus roads closed Monday to begin a new phase of construction that will make the campus more pedestrian-friendly, said Vice President of Business Operations Jim Lyphout.

The University closed sections of St. Joseph Drive, Moose Krause Drive and Juniper Road so workers can remove Juniper Road, realign parking lots and extend underground utilities, particularly the sewers, Notre Dame Security/Police (NDSP) said in a March 1 e-mail.

Lyphout said this construction is part of the “campus master plan that was written in 2002 and adopted by the Board of Trustees.”

This plan will reduce the number of vehicles traveling through campus by routing traffic around the perimeter of campus, he said.

Another goal of the construction project is to improve the campus sewer system.

Lyphout said working on the sewers is necessary to increase their capacity since the campus has grown, making the current system insufficient.

The construction crews are taking precautionary safety measures while they work on this new group of construction projects, University Architect Doug Marsh said.

These safety measures are “to protect pedestrians from falling into what will be very deep trenches and pits dug into the ground within these areas,” Marsh said.

This construction project should be finished in mid-August before fall classes begin next year, Marsh said. Landscape work will be completed during the fall.

But Lyphout said Notre Dame Avenue could experience heavy traffic, since he expects the next couple of years to be “very busy in terms of construction.”

Construction is set to begin on a new Law School this summer and also on an engineering building next year.

“It’s going to take a lot of patience on the part of the Notre Dame community,” Lyphout said.

Marsh also said the campus construction will cause some interruptions to normal campus life. NDSP instructed people who park in the B, C or Legends lots, for example, to enter from the Edison Road driveways east of Eddy Street.

“We appreciate very much the campus community’s patience with these inconveniences,” he said.

Marsh and Lyphout both said these safety precautions have nothing to do with the gas leak that occurred near the Hesburgh Library a few weeks ago.

“It’s totally independent,” Lyphout said. “These precautions are very normal. We try to keep a proper distance from the potential hazards of construction.”