By Laura Fenton
Construction delays may occur along Central Avenue between Zach Curlin and Patterson
throughout this academic year due to a delay in the Central Avenue Safety Project
that has pushed back its completion until next year.
The project was expected to conclude this summer, but City of Memphis and U of M officials
say they cannot move forward until the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT)
approves all plans.
“We’re waiting for TDOT to give us approval to put that out for bid,” said Tony Poteet,
assistant vice president for campus planning and design. “There’s no change in the
scope of the project, just the time.”
All aspects of the project must be cleared through the state attorney general and
The proposal calls for installing a center median on Central Avenue, as well as bike
lanes on both the north and south sides of the street. It will also add a new parking
lot entrance at the four-way intersection at Central and Zach Curlin, eliminate existing
entrances between Zach Curlin and the Kemmons Wilson School, erect new street and
pedestrian lighting and add new sidewalks from Patterson Street to Zach Curlin.
Total budget for the project is $3.33 million. It is being funded by enhancement
grants, state capital maintenance funds and money from the City of Memphis Capital
A summer-long enhancement project for the Central Avenue parking lot was completed
just in time for the start of the semester. It includes new pavement, striping and
an easier-to-navigate traffic-flow scheme. Improvements to Central Avenue have been
delayed, but are still planned. (Photo by Rhonda Cosentino)
The other project along Central Avenue, the renovation of the on-campus parking lot,
was finished just prior to the start of the fall semester. All spaces are available
For more information, visit www.memphis.edu/centralave.htm or email firstname.lastname@example.org.