As USC’s campus prepares to shift rapidly to the other side of town with the opening of the new business school, the university is also preparing to address another issue that accompanies it: pedestrian traffic flow.
It’s no small issue. While student traffic across Assembly Street (where the journalism school and music building sit) is currently around 3,000 people, the flow will increase to a mass migration of around 15,000 to 18,000 students each day when the new business school opens. And with the recent news of a student being hit by a car on Assembly, we’re glad that USC is taking quick action to accommodate for this change.
There’s nothing safe about Assembly as it is right now. The street has very few narrow crosswalks in place, as well as an inconveniently located hill that often obstructs the view of oncoming traffic. However, the new improvements will extend the sidewalks, take out the metered parking to build a larger median in the center and construct an elevator on the stairs leading to the underground tunnel. While we’re not thrilled at the idea of losing those precious parking spaces, we definitely think these measures will make the street safer for students.
But traffic safety isn’t up to the university alone — students need to be careful as well. Even with signs and crosswalks, Assembly is still an extremely busy street, and we should be sure to heed laws. That means jaywalking because you’re late to class is probably a bad idea, and the underground tunnel should be frequented as much as possible. Only by cooperating with the city can we ensure that we’ll get to class with all limbs intact.