UTEP campus sees changes on first day of Fall semester

UTEP campus sees changes on first day of Fall semester
MGN Online
Wednesday, August 21, 2013 - 11:13am

The start of The University of Texas at El Paso 2013 fall semester will welcome students with many physical changes and enhancements related to UTEP's Campus Transformation projects. Below are the highlights:

New Night Permits:
UTEP will offer new night permits for evening students. These discounted parking permits will be valid on campus only after 4 p.m. weekdays in any garage, except the Glory Road Parking Garage, and in all campus lots. The permit will be valid in the Inner Campus beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Carpool Parking Permit:
UTEP continues to offer a carpool permit program for two or more riders at an approximately 15 percent discount off a regularly priced permit for the same location. UTEP also offers a rider matching service for those wanting to form their own carpool. Faculty/staff and students who live in Las Cruces may also find rides through this service.

Wiggins Road and Wiggins Plaza:
The enhanced landscaping of both Wiggins Road and Wiggins Plaza is scheduled to be complete by the beginning of the fall semester. The circular plaza will include shade trees, benches and an elliptical labyrinth between the University Library and the Health Sciences and Nursing Building. Wiggins Road from the plaza to Rim Road will include native or drought resistant plant material, as well as new LED light fixtures that will be more energy efficient and enhance campus safety.

Parking Lot Changes: The following lots will be closed permanently, temporarily or partially.

· S-2 next to the Schuster Parking Garage was eliminated with the construction of the new roundabout on Schuster as part of the Spur 1966 project.

· Limited spaces will be available in lot P-4, off Schuster near I-10, due to the Spur 1966 ongoing construction. Please note the new entrance/exit for this lot will be off of Prospect Street with no access via Schuster or Sun Bowl Drive during the remainder of the project.

· Lots P-6 and P-7 along Sun Bowl Drive will be closed beginning Sept. 9 for the Sun Bowl Drive widening and expansion project. P-7 will re-open only for home football game days during the construction.

· In the campus core, lot IC-10 next to Union Building West and parking spaces on Hawthorne Street north of University Avenue, Circle Drive, and Kerbey Avenue have been permanently eliminated as part of Campus Transformation.

New Parking Meters: New meters have been installed on Wiggins Road in front of Benedict Hall and in front of the Centennial Museum. Also, four meters have been installed on University Avenue just east of the Information Kiosk near Sun Bowl Drive. These are meant for visitors who are not faculty, staff or students.

Drop-Off Zones: Several new drop-off zones have been created for parents and visitors wanting to drop off students at key locations around campus. Please see onthemove.utep.edu for a map.

Miner Metro Changes: The Oregon Street Miner Metro Shuttle stop on Glory Road will move south on Oregon closer to the lot P-12 entrance to make way for the city's new Rapid Transit bus stop.

The shuttle stop in lot P-5 near the Rubin Gallery will be eliminated and relocated to the bus stop in front of the Sun Bowl Garage. This change will increase pedestrian safety in the lot and allow for faster turnaround times on this route. In addition, this move will allow the creation of a pedestrian drop-off zone. Also, the change will allow seamless transfers to the Campus Loop Green Route # 2 from this location.

Spur 1966 Schuster Avenue Roundabout:
This Texas Department of Transportation project is scheduled to be complete by the first day of the fall semester. The new raised, two-lane roundabout will be located southwest of the Schuster Parking Garage and will create a new access point to the UTEP campus. A walkway underneath the roundabout will give pedestrians safe passage from the parking lots on the south side of Schuster Avenue to the UTEP campus.
The roundabout is part of the Spur 1966 TxDOT project that will connect Paisano Drive to Schuster Avenue via a bridge over Interstate 10 near the Yandell Street overpass.

New HAWK Lights:
Beginning Aug. 26, new High-Intensity Activated Crosswalk, or HAWK, lights on Schuster Avenue at Prospect Street and Lawton Drive will help regulate traffic along Schuster to accommodate pedestrians crossing the street. For pedestrians, the lights work much like a regular stop light - when the "Walk" symbol is illuminated, it is safe to cross. For vehicles, the lights will remain off when no pedestrians are present. When pedestrians are ready to cross, the light will flash yellow, turn solid yellow and then turn solid red like a stop light. When it begins flashing red, vehicles may proceed after stopping if the road is clear, like a stop sign.

Sun Metro Routes:
On Sept. 23, Sun Metro will launch a new Route #75 Far East Express from R.C. Poe Road and Edgemere Boulevard to UTEP. More than 150 free parking spaces will be available.
Sun Metro Bus Route #70, the Eastside Express from the Sun Metro Cielo Vista Mall Transfer Center to UTEP, will resume operation on Monday, Aug. 26 to coincide with the start of the fall semester. There are more than 100 free park-and-ride spaces available in the lot.
Sun Metro continues to offer an express route from the Westside Transfer Center on Remcon Circle to their Downtown transfer station, with a connection to Route #204 express to University and Oregon and to Glory Road. Miner Metro connections are available at both points.
UTEP students who are Juárez residents are encouraged to utilize Route #204 for its express service to the campus from the Downtown Transfer Center.

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