Is this school spirit or idiocy?

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Michael Hoffman

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Oct 24, 1999, 3:00:00 AM10/24/99
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Reshma Khatri wrote:

> Incidentally (going slightly off-topic), does anyone know what happened to
> that plan from a few years ago to close off parts of Speedway to traffic and
> turn it into a walkway? I guess the plan was cancelled -- I wish they had
> gone ahead with that -- that would have been nice!

The destruction begins May 1, 2000. If UT System Office of Facilities
Planning and Construction has their way, it should be closed from 19th
to 21st after that time. Muahahahaha!

Whether they will have their way or not is debatable. OFPC is
running behind on most of their projects except ones involving
football. (Note to Jay: this should not be taken as an attack on
football. I'm just noting that it would be nice if we could get the
same kinds of efficiency OFPC found in the stadium projects and apply
them to say, the installation of new fire protection systems in Welch
and Jester.)

> > Start going to the games. :)
>
> I figured someone might say that. Actually, a friend and I were talking
> awhile back about how we should go to a game once this year, just so we can
> know what it's like, but I guess it's getting kind of late to do that now.
> Oh well, can't say I really feel left out. :-)

Why is that?

> That's no solution anyway -- even if I attended games, it would still be
> difficult to get to the grocery store afterwards!

Not that this is an excuse, but you have known this problem existed
for at least three years. I think there are compromises you make when
you live in the dorm, which is in the middle of a multiple use zone.
Well anyway...

It's really difficult to handle 84,000 people in a space that wasn't
even designed for 40,000. As I understand it, your problems are the
traffic and the bus stop closings. Your suggestion for the traffic is
to make people park off campus. Well, they already are. There are less
than 18,000 spots on campus. I live at Speedway and 32nd, and two hours
before the games my neighborhood is completely packed with parked
cars. I'm betting much of the traffic comes from surrounding areas,
which you can't ban parking in as easily. Even if you did, it is
really tough to move out 84,000 people in any period of time.

What they need is an enormous parking lot, and that's something they
cannot have.

As far as the bus stop closings, that sucks. While you may be
inconvenienced by traffic, I don't think you should lose your access
to transportation at any speed. Have you asked Cap Metro about the
problem? Maybe they have some rationale or better yet, suggestions.
--
Michael Hoffman <gro...@mail.utexas.edu>
<http://spice.cc.utexas.edu/~grouse/>
The University of Texas at Austin

Michael Hoffman

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Oct 24, 1999, 3:00:00 AM10/24/99
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Jay Howard wrote:

> Hey -- the new CS building was/is being built pretty efficiently. Oh
> wait...it's being constructed by a private individual. :)

I'm having some misgivings about that building. I don't think it's
going to blend in with Forty Acres style architecture very well. It was
pre-Master Plan. Oh well, at least it's going to be done on time, and
we didn't have to pay anything for it.

Michael Hoffman

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Oct 24, 1999, 3:00:00 AM10/24/99
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Reshma Khatri wrote:

> Michael Hoffman wrote:
>
> > The destruction begins May 1, 2000. If UT System Office of Facilities
> > Planning and Construction has their way, it should be closed from 19th
> > to 21st after that time. Muahahahaha!
>

> Do you know of any recent information on the web about that? The last time I
> checked (August, I think), I couldn't find it on any list of planned campus
> construction and renovation projects, and the only stuff I could find related to
> it was several years old.

http://www1.utsystem.edu/FPC/estsched/ausschedfs.htm

Project 965, the Blanton museum is going to be placed smack in the
middle of Speedway and lot 67. Yes, less parking. :-(

> Why can't I say that I feel left out because I haven't attended any games?
> Because I really doubt I would enjoy being at one. Not because of the game itself
> -- though I'm not much of a football fan, I really wouldn't mind watching a game,
> but the crowds, noise, craziness...ick.

Uh, that's why it's so much fun. If you don't want all that, you
should watch the game on TV...ick. Trust me on this one. Just try it
with an open mind, come early, be loud, stay late and wear orange.
It's fun.

> Actually, some of these problems have only recently come to light for me. I knew
> the traffic was pretty bad after football games, but I didn't realize such large
> sections of streets were closed off and that several bus stops shut down. I guess
> I never tried to bus or walk somewhere off-campus right after a game before. And
> yes, there are compromises, but this situation seems to be too great an
> inconvenience just for a game, IMO. It's not really a dorm issue, btw -- anyone
> who tried to go down Guadalupe -- by car, bus, or foot -- at that time would have
> faced problems.

How did these problems only recently come to light? People know to
avoid certain areas due to traffic during certain time periods (e.g.
rush hour). It's a fact of life. Would it be nice to eliminate this
problem? Yes. But the workaround is avoid it.

> yes, there are compromises, but this situation seems to be too great an
> inconvenience just for a game, IMO.

It's not just a game, it's an Event. It is a part of the local
culture that you haven't even experienced. I know it sounds silly, but
to some people this is a major part of their lives or whatever, and
one of you is going to have to be inconvenienced. Traffic happens.

The bus thing sucks though.

> Anyway, you're
> right, it would be difficult to stop people from parking in the surrounding
> neighborhoods. Doesn't this upset the residents of those areas?

Yeah, somewhat. But the streets belong to the people and there are many
more who want to use the streets to park than who live there.

Here's the problem: too many people in too small a space. What do you
want to do to fix this? Disperse them as much as possible. That means
have parking sprawled out in every direction, not having them get onto
a shuttle bus like cattle. My $0.02.

> > Have you asked Cap Metro about the
> > problem? Maybe they have some rationale or better yet, suggestions.
>

> No, I haven't -- maybe I'll do that. The rationale, I suppose, is that leaving
> those stops open would slow the routes? (A real disaster considering how slow
> some of them already are.) I'll check it out.

I am interested. Please let me know.

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