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Administration communicates master plan effectively

Credit: Adelaide Cole/Art Editor Credit: Adelaide Cole/Art Editor

The new Institutional Master Plan 2012 is a great example of how the administration can effectively communicate with the campus community and the community at large. Planned over 18 months, the master plan details the way the university wants to expand over the next 10 years. With over 80 public meetings on different parts of the plan that included campus and community input, the university has made the master plan and the decisions leading up to it quite transparent. Granted, the university is required to submit a master plan to the city every 10 years, but it is wise that the university recognizes that the input of the community is paramount to passing such a plan.

We believe that the administration should prioritize the building of certain structures and amenities included in the plan. Housing should be one of the topmost priorities of the master plan implementation. With an increase in students over the past several years, more housing is a must. We are also a bit worried about the proposed buildings on the Morewood parking lot. This area is the long-time home of Spring Carnival, a Carnegie Mellon tradition that alumni, students, faculty, staff, and the Oakland community all enjoy. We hope the administration has thought about a suitable place where Carnival could be moved and made provisions to keep one of Carnegie Mellon’s most important events intact.

Even more important are the proposed alterations to Forbes Avenue, which include converting the road from four lanes into two with added bike lanes. Although Oakland is known for its high density of bikers, we wonder if this change might impede traffic, buses, and emergency vehicles. This sentiment was echoed by community members at several of the public master plan meetings, where the administration fielded questions and listened to local opinions on the plan. Of course, not all of the initiatives described in the master plan will come to fruition, but if it is as successful as the last master plan, the community and students should be well aware of the proposed changes.

The administration should be congratulated for a well-thought-out, transparent piece of documentation that lets the Carnegie Mellon community know what direction the university is headed in. We hope that this master plan is a sign that the university continues this trend of good communication well into the future.