View from the Hill: Hilltop Restoration Project making campus more accessible
- WKU News
- Thursday, April 20th, 2023
Big changes are happening at the top of the hill and creating new pathways for students to be successful.
The Hilltop Restoration Project is one of many ways WKU is making campus as accessible and barrier free as possible as WKU's Amy Bingham explains in this week’s View from the Hill.
“Everybody belongs on the Hill.”
That’s the tagline associated with WKU’s observance of Neurodiversity Awareness Week, a chance to highlight all the ways WKU’s physical environment can enhance learning.
“We have been working on making the hill accessible to everybody for a long time.”
GIS Specialist Josh Montgomery is able to monitor the improvements very closely.
“The reason that we got the drone was to be able to document these changes, these physical changes on campus.”
The biggest transformation--the Hilltop Restoration Project located across from the Commons.
“One of the ways we’ve been able to transform the campus is by the larger projects we’ve had.”
“As we took down Garrett Conference Center, we did a study and envisioned how we could reclaim, provide more green space consistent with our master plan.”
Chief Facilities Officer Bryan Russell says some of the goals of the Hilltop Restoration Project were to eliminate vehicle/pedestrian interaction. This area also features wide sidewalks and accessibility.
More touch openings have been added throughout campus and steps that had been around for decades were eliminated in order to widen sidewalks and create more barrier free entrances.
“We have actually, are creating, off of College Heights Boulevard, a great barrier free walkway from College Heights Boulevard up in front of Cherry Hall and Gordon Wilson Hall.”
Other safety measures include emergency phones that WKU Police continue monitoring throughout campus.
“You can press a button and it dials directly into dispatch, so that person can speak to dispatch about what may be going on at the time and we send a police officer.”
WKU PD operates 24/7 365 days a year even when students are gone for the semester.
And Parking and Transportation also plays a big role in student success by getting them where they need to go.
“Topper Transit offers a variety of transportation solution to help get students across campus, all our buses are ADA accessible.”
Students needing curb to curb drop off can also register for the ADA van service.
All of these elements go hand in hand with the physical improvements to make WKU more accessible for all.