The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Thursday August 11th


Driver policy too lenient: Chapel Hill Transit should have stricter incident and discipline policies

The accident record of the bus driver responsible for the death of a UNC Health Care employee on Oct. 27 raises serious concerns about the town's vetting process of bus drivers for safety. Chapel Hill Transit driver James Willie Orr was involved in 10 accidents between 2001 and 2008 — eight of which took place while driving a Chapel Hill Transit bus. Two accidents occurred in a personal automobile.

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Bridge to nowhere: Building a pedestrian bridge over South Road isn't a good use of University funds

No one can deny that pedestrian traffic on South Road is a serious problem but a massive bridge from Student Stores to Stadium Drive is not the most practical solution. Of course something should be done to revamp  current traffic conditions and improve safety for students walking to and from campus. Pedestrian safety has become a significant concern this year as two people have been struck and killed by Chapel Hill Transit buses on campus.

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Look both ways: Town right to think about improving pedestrian safety but there's more to be done

The town's testing of a new pedestrian crossing system last week shows an impressive openness to innovation and a special sensitivity to safety on and near campus. After several tragic accidents involving pedestrians in the past year it's good to see the town looking for innovative ways to address this problem. While this new crossing scheme doesn't directly remedy the major cause of the accident in October (driver error) the town is still right to address the broader issue of pedestrian safety.

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Sustainability a must

UNC has made another gesture indicating its support of environmental sustainablity but it must continue to take concrete steps to illustrate this commitment. UNC has recently signed on to a resolution with a long-term goal to become a carbon-neutral campus joining 600 other colleges and universities nationwide.

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Innovative sustainability

A new Duke University initiative to encourage people to take old homes off campus is a smart move for sustainability. In preparation for the construction of new residence halls academic buildings and other offices Duke is offering financial incentive for private individuals to move old houses from the university's campus where the new facilities will be built. It's smarter environmentally to help move the homes rather than demolish them and put the remnants in local landfills.

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Run in 5k to honor Eve

Eve had a passion for all things UNC so what better way to honor her legacy than by participating in the Eve Carson Memorial 5k for Education? The race will raise money for The Eve Marie Carson Memorial Junior-Year Merit Scholarship.

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Address the dropout rate

Last Monday the Orange County Board of Education adopted a symbolic measure that would raise the minimum dropout age to 18. The N.C. General Assembly should follow suit and attempt to address our increasing dropout rate statewide. The 2006-07 dropout rate for North Carolina high schools was the highest figure in seven years. Orange County's resolution was an attempt to address the fact that more than three quarters of N.C. student dropouts were ages 16 to 18.

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Don't neglect safety: Safety renovations should not be put on hold

While the recent economic downturn has left UNC with less funding construction projects intended to improve fire safety on campus especially in dorms should not be delayed. The state budget office's decision to withhold $6.5 million for repairs and renovations will affect the University's construction projects many of which are fire safety renovations.

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Expanded Safe Ride needed

Student Body President J.J. Raynor's idea of implementing a late-night Chapel Hill-Carrboro bus route is an excellent proposal. This bus will be useful to the large number of underserved students living in the Carrboro area.

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