Over the past four days, over 100 faculty, alumni, staff, students, and neighbors have signed our petition supporting the Campus Drive alignment for the Purple Line on Campus. We have been overwhelmed by this outpouring of support and hope it demonstrates broad-based and diverse support for the alignment preferred by the Maryland Transit Administration’s planners and engineers. We thought we would highlight some of the interesting comments contributed by community members.
“The University made a terrible mistake .. when campus leadership forced Metro off campus. We must not make the same mistake again. Light rail is part of any sane future energy and transportation policy and the University stop should be near the center of things. This will help the campus maximize its oft-boasted strategic advantage of having easy access to the research and internship opportunities of the National Capital area. Campus leadership has talked of closing Campus Drive to regular traffic for more than 20 years, but has done absolutely nothing. The Purple Line will increase safety by getting frustrated private vehicle drivers off Campus Drive, leaving it for the Purple Line, professionally-driven buses, and emergency vehicles.” — Professor Maynard Mack, Jr.
“This is a must to help make the campus more accessible and raise its status as a top-level university.” — Andrew Hallowell, Undergraduate
“I also live near campus. The purple line would make it possible for me to use Metro to travel to many place I regularly visit around the area. As Metro is presently constructed, it is often time consuming and inefficient to travel by Metro instead of car. This would increase my use of Metro. Furthermore, as a resident of a neighborhood close to campus, the Purple Line could enable many sports fans and attendees of other university activities to use public transportation rather than driving.” — Anonymous University Employee
“One of the main reasons I have not considered applying for jobs at the University of Maryland is that I want to live in a more walkable and transit-oriented community. For these things, I’ll stay in Ann Arbor, Michigan.” — Kevin Hawkins, Alumni
“The University should support the Purple Line down Campus Drive!” — Andrew Rose, Former Undergraduate Student Body President
“It is crucial that UMD takes steps to reduce its CO2 output and the number of cars driving on campus. I spent 2 years commuting from Washington DC to the UMD campus. On a daily basis, the shuttle ride up Campus Drive was stalled by the high volume of traffic – mainly personal cars. Bringing the purple line to Campus Drive would make the campus much more attractive for pedestrians and would reduce the need for people to drive to campus.” — Heidi Ruffler, Graduate Student
“Making such a central and visible commitment to public transportation would really transform campus and the College Park community in a dramatic and very positive way!” — Dana Coelho, Alumnae
“It makes no sense to route the Purple Line down Stadium Drive. This route is longer, much less-convenient to the center of campus, and would present a safety hazard before and after football games. If the university is serious about getting people out of cars and into alternative forms of transportation, it should support the Campus Drive alignment.” — Jim Elliot, Graduate Student
“I support the Campus Drive alignment. There is no central gathering place on Stadium drive. Most of the foot traffic getting off at the Stadium Drive location would most assuredly migrate to Campus Drive and further south. Also, there is nothing to greet you at Stadium Drive. There is no central hang out.” — John W. Euill, III, UMUC Student
“This route is ‘straight’ and services two cores, the Stamp Student Union and East Campus since the line passes directly through them as opposed to a diverted route. Direct access is considered a boon to many and it is likely that the two centers will appreciate managed mobile options to attract regional clout. While safety concerns are always a priority in any project, I feel the ones that the president are coming up with are rather ludicrous and unfounded. Walking to Susquehanna every other day, I find that crossing Campus drive is already a chore dodging around cars and trucks and buses, and there are those few rude enough to keep going, but I wait patiently because I know I’M NOT GOING TO GET RUN OVER. … Adding a street train is no different than another bus or truck. Sometimes I think those trucks are more hazardous on campus since they … jump the curve … I feel many stand to benefit from a centralized location that serves the -region- as a whole. I don’t want future generations of passengers and students to suffer, Campus Drive is our best alternative!” — Andrew Newsome, Civil Engineering Undergraduate