Utah DOT improved community access to transit and improved safety for pedestrians and bicyclists with the completion of the $30 million Utah Valley University (UVU) Pedestrian Bridge.
UVU, Utah’s fastest-growing university, quickly outgrew its main campus. To accommodate this growth, UVU built a campus extension to the west, including new housing to accommodate more than 10,000 students. However, I-15 and an intermodal transit station separates that new housing from the school’s main campus. The division caused a “first-mile, last-mile” issue for transit users, with a busy freeway interchange at University Parkway serving as the only connection between the two campuses. The infrastructure around UVU also suffered from traffic congestion, parking, safety, and air quality issues resulting from the housing/campus disconnect.
The new pedestrian bridge provides better mobility by connecting multiple modes of transportation at a strategic location, and it increases transportation options for people coming and going within the area. It promotes good health by providing an active transportation alternative and the elevator towers connected to the bridge provides Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant access. The bridge connects the community by enhancing access between housing and education, and it strengthens the economy by providing a better-connected commuting option for UVU employees and guests. Finally, the bridge contributes to reducing the number of cars on surrounding roads and in the UVU parking lots – contributing to better air quality, a greener environment, and improving the quality of life for everyone living in the area.