Central Path in the works, but still in planning stage

Central Path in the works, but still in planning stage

September 02
18:58 2014

Rhiannon Saegert / Senior Staff Writer

In addition to the current campus-wide construction, the Board of Regents discussed plans for a large central pathway that would wind through the middle of the campus at its most recent meeting.

The latest design shows the proposed path zig-zagging across the campus and through the library mall to connect the Gateway Center with Fry Street.

Associate vice president of facilities David Reynolds said the plan for a central path came out of the campus-wide Master Plan, an extensive guide to future campus improvements and construction.

“UNT has a campus Master Plan that was published Summer 2013,” Reynolds said. “That’s kind of a guiding document, a template for where new buildings should go on campus, where new walkways should go to tie things together. Mainly, it’s to decide how we’re going to grow and where we’re going to grow, building-wise.”

Reynolds said the path is only a concept now. A final design hasn’t been chosen.

“The thought is, you’re able to have a diagonal parkway that cuts across Clark Park, across the parking lot, connecting right on the north end of the new Rawlins Hall, and right to the Gateway,” he said.

During the regents meeting, vice chancellor for administrative services James Maguire said a central pathway could help develop a campus identity. Reynolds said it will tie in with the Library Mall, which already serves as an iconic element on campus.

“It becomes an area of the campus that, long after you’ve graduated, you’re going to remember walking that mall,” Reynolds said. “Tie a walking path through the campus with some similar architectural elements so you know you’re at UNT’s campus.”

Maguire said his office helped develop UNT’s Master Plan and oversees its implementation, but mostly collaborates with Facilities.

“The planning important details of the Master Plan are really dependent on collaboration with the campus,” he said. “What I see coming out of this is what the campus expects, which is that it’ll be a unifying and identifying element to student life on campus.”

Some students said the pathway project, on top of the already ongoing construction on campus, seems  like too much.

“Maybe finish the student union first,” accounting senior Conner Diamond said.

Marketing senior Chad Russell agreed.

“It would be useful, but it’d redirect lots of traffic, so it’d be a bit overwhelming,” Russell said. “Maybe if they finished the other construction or did it during the summer, but during the semester it would just be a lot of construction going on.”

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