July 23, 2014
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New RIT sidewalk saves a life (and maybe more) Miscellaneous

A general rule of headline writing is to avoid stating what may happen, what continues to happen and what did not happen. Instead, a good headline says what did happen or what will happen.

So, does my headline for this blog post violate the rule by stating what might happen (or what didn’t happen)? One could argue it does. But I believe the banner says what truly will happen.

I’m referring to the campus’ new “multi-use trail” that’s currently under construction along the inner side of Andrews Drive, running from Wiltsie Drive to Gleason Circle. (For more, see this story in News & Events.) RIT student government pushed for the shared sidewalk/bikeway, which should be open in time for fall quarter (probably much sooner based on what appears to be terrific progress by work crews).

But, while it’s a great addition to campus for commuting and recreational walkers, runners and bikers alike, will it really save a life (or more) as my headline claims? I believe so, and here’s why . . .

As one who drives that entire span of Andrews Drive daily, I can attest that there are times when rain, early nightfall and the glare of oncoming headlights combine to make it nearly impossible to see the road ahead. And, I confess, I’ve had occasion to curse joggers who seemingly lack the good sense to come in from the rain. But motorists, too, need not shun their responsibility, as some drive much too fast for conditions. Who would be most culpable if there were to be a tragedy?

Fortunately, the risk to bikers, pedestrians and motorists should be greatly reduced through this much-needed enhancement. I truly believe that RIT just spent a pittance—$465,000—to save a life, and possibly many more over time. What a fantastic bargain!

So, kudos to the RIT administration, Jan Reich and Jim Yarrington of Facilities Management Services, and Ed Wolf, student government president, for helping make this plan a reality. And, now that it’s summer and I’m riding my bicycle to campus about once a week, I can’t wait to try out the new trail!

Have a great weekend!

 

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