UNCG just might put the “forest” back in Forest.

Planners are considering – at some point in the future – a pedestrian and bike friendly route, shaded by trees, extending from the glen in Glenwood through the new underpass and along what’s now Forest Street. It could pass somewhat close to Mossman Building (away from the service-trucks area of EUC) as it proceeds to Kaplan Commons. It could continue in front of EUC to a potential transit hub and entranceway adjoining Jackson Library tower.

That was one of the most inspiring possibilities shown during a presentation at the UNCG Campus Master Plan Update forums recently.

Matt Takacs, assistant director of project management in UNCG Facilities Design and Construction, introduced two planners with Sasaki Associates, who helped with the campus master plan update in 2007 and are assisting this year as well.

The planners highlighted some of what they’d learned through an online survey:

Green spaces and pedestrian malls are important to campus character.

Students want good quality, affordable housing on campus.

Students want more dining options on Tate and Lee Streets, more places for meeting, and better connectivity among the Dining Hall, library and EUC.

Students value the campus landscape and want it pulled across to the Lee Street Corridor.

Students value sustainability on campus and want to see more sustainability efforts.

As for safety, students are most concerned about it at the periphery of campus.

Planners noted the current travel patterns across campus.

As for east/west pedestrian traffic, currently many students pass through the EUC. Similarly, students might pass through Jackson Library the same way, in the future. What is now the back of the Jackson Tower could have an inviting entryway, with a transit hub nearby.

They also addressed Lee Street. While Lee Street is more of a thoroughfare than Spring Garden, it can have some similar elements, the planners noted. Turn lanes could have landscaping. A variety of paving materials could be used. With more landscaping and “less industrial feel,” it could have a more nuanced design, they explained.

As the planners showed possibilities for the future, they noted that the campus has a long history of planning – and that UNCG’s students want green space and landscape.

With the glen on one end of campus, Peabody Park on the other, and other smaller natural spaces throughout campus, that desire could be satisfied.

The presenters explained they were thinking long term. “We’re thinking 10 or 20 years out.”

PowerPoints of the spring and fall presentations – as well as more information about the Master Plan update – can be found here.

Story by Mike Harris, University Relations