PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The fences were put up and tanks delivered Friday morning, all part of a project to improve Bigelow Boulevard between Forbes and Fifth Avenues in Oakland.
It’s the roadway and space between the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning and the William Pitt Student Union.READ MORE: 'Moderna Arm': Some People Develop Reaction To Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine
“We have about 9,000 students who cross Bigelow Boulevard every day, and this project will make it safer for them and for the drivers who use the road as well,” said Scott Bernotas, Associate Vice Chancellor for the university’s Facilities Management department.
Renderings show what the space will look like once it is completed, but it doesn’t show the improvements that will be made to the infrastructure underground.
“It’s chilled water, water lines and other utility lines both on behalf of the city and the university,” Bernotas said.
One part of the transformation project is to make it safer for the students who cross this part of Bigelow Boulevard and the drivers who use this block. There’s going to be a wider pedestrian crossing in the middle of Bigelow Boulevard.
“I think that will be good because it will be safer for us, and it’ll allow cars to go through easier too,” said Lauryn Feinstein, a freshman.READ MORE: High School Spring Sports Kick Off After Being Canceled Last Year During Pandemic's Start
The project will cost nearly $24 million and will be completed in three phases.
Karl Ahlqvist, also a freshman, added, “The only thing I hope they improve is when classes come out a lot of cars line up, and they can’t go anywhere for 10 minutes, so I hope they fix that issue.”
“I think that’s great. Anything that will keep it safer, that’s great,” said Tom Coocomb, another freshman.
The final phase is for beautification, which will include adding trees, lighting and outdoor space for the William Pitt Union.
The project is expected to be completed in August 2020, in time for the start of the fall semester.MORE NEWS: Pittsburgh-Area Caregivers Asking Lawmakers To Increase Minimum Wage End 48-Hour Fast
For more information on the project, visit https://www.bigelowproject.pitt.edu/.