Construction causes headaches for University of Memphis students - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Construction causes headaches for University of Memphis students

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Most Mid-South kids have been back in class for weeks, but University of Memphis students headed back to class Friday and some of them may have found a few stumbling blocks along the way. Most Mid-South kids have been back in class for weeks, but University of Memphis students headed back to class Friday and some of them may have found a few stumbling blocks along the way.
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Most Mid-South kids have been back in class for weeks, but University of Memphis students headed back to class Friday and some of them may have found a few stumbling blocks along the way.

The U of M's back to school theme this year is "Warm Welcome," but the reception on Central Avenue, a main artery for students trying to settle in, is anything but inviting.

After all, it's tough to get where you need to go when the road to class looks like a disaster area.

Students have had to navigate around multiple improvement projects on a street that's busy under the best of circumstances,

"It makes it harder because we have to go around the construction," said Shelby Wilson, a University of Memphis student.

Making matters worse, one of the school's main parking lots is located on Central Avenue and parking was already at a premium even before the construction.

Crews are repaving the stretch of Central Avenue on campus, MLGW is installing underground repair shelters and a city contractor is installing fiber optics for area street lights.

The city is also installing handicap accessible ramps to the curbs around campus which is only adding to the congestion.

Students wonder why the work couldn't have been done during their summer break.

However, city officials say improvements have been going at various sites on all summer and they just happened to land along Central Avenue at the same time students did.

Paving in front of the Central Avenue parking lot should wrap by Monday, but the project will continue one block to the west and it could be a month or more before traffic is running smoothly.

But all the work is nothing compared to what will be going on in the area next year.

There's a plan to install a median and a fence that will force pedestrians to cross at the street's crosswalks. The $3.5 million project is designed to make the busy area safer for students.

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