Staff Editorial: Bridging the gap between safety and savings

On Wednesday night, a University of Miami senior was hit by a Ford Expedition as she was crossing U.S. 1 at Mariposa Court. The driver of the SUV tried to swerve away from her, but she found herself injured and lying in the grass near the Metrorail.

This is not the first time an incident like this has occurred. Since 1990, seven UM students have been hit crossing U.S 1, three resulting in deaths.

Following a fatal incident in April 2005, Student Government passed the “Ashley Kelly Resolution,” advocating a pedestrian overpass to be built across U.S. 1 at Mariposa Court. Unfortunately, the project was removed from Miami-Dade Transit’s capital improvement plan due to fiscal challenges.

Why can’t our university get an approval from Florida’s Department of Transportation or the county to fund the design and construction of this pedestrian bridge?

In the past, UM has promoted student safety by making use of shuttles to Coconut Grove, establishing student patrol programs and planning a $200,000 expansion of security cameras in September 2009. This issue is no exception. There is no reason as to why we cannot follow through with our commitment to finance programs that enhance student safety.

Administrators and city officials must make this a priority and undertake a funding initiative for this project before more lives are lost. The recession should not be used as an excuse for us to delay this crucial proposal. Don’t let another student death begin the construction of this overpass.

Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial board.