GW strives to create a safe place for the students who call its campus home, yet something is keeping this from being achieved – automobiles. To change this, students must reclaim the streets and make them safe for non-automobile traffic.
Most GW students walk, rollerblade or ride bicycles to class, and yet the University does little to protect us. Cars crowd H Street in front of the Marvin Center during the evening rush hour, a time when a large number of students are trying to cross the street. Between the cars careening out of the parking garage and the commuters racing home, it is a wonder that more students are not hit.
On top of that, the automobiles and the streets they drive on create barriers between students, which in turn keeps a true community from being created. This barrier is 23rd Street, which students must wait minutes to cross on the way to class each morning. This barrier is keeping the University from having a unified feeling to it.
To alleviate these problems, I propose that H Street be closed to automobile traffic between 23rd and 21st Streets. This will allow for a central campus that is safe for pedestrians in front of the Marvin Center, and will alleviate the traffic turning off 23rd Street. Dan Tangherlini, the acting director of D.C.’s Department of Public Works Division of Transportation has expressed interest in this idea. With the support of both the University and the city government, this goal can be accomplished. This will be an excellent first step in creating the safety and community that the University promises its students.
-Alyssa M. Haynes