Mercer Cluster

Pedestrian bridge installed, construction continues

Construction+continues+across+Mercer+University+Dr.+getting+ready+for+the+upcoming+school+year.
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Pedestrian bridge installed, construction continues

Construction continues across Mercer University Dr. getting ready for the upcoming school year.

Construction continues across Mercer University Dr. getting ready for the upcoming school year.

Jenna Eason

Construction continues across Mercer University Dr. getting ready for the upcoming school year.

Jenna Eason

Jenna Eason

Construction continues across Mercer University Dr. getting ready for the upcoming school year.

Conner Wood, Editor in Chief

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The pedestrian bridge may have been installed Wednesday, April 6, but students at Mercer University shouldn’t expect construction on that side of campus to end by the time classes do.

Ralph Gonzolas, an employee of Evergreen Lawn and Garden, works in front of the new Lofts across Mercer University Dr. He says, “This place is going to look good when we’re done with it."

Jenna Eason
Ralph Gonzolas, an employee of Evergreen Lawn and Garden, works in front of the new Lofts across Mercer University Dr. He says, “This place is going to look good when we’re done with it.”

“Everything but the hotel is expected to be completed by the first of August,”said Larry Brumley, senior vice president for marketing communications and chief of staff to President William Underwood.

The bridge connects the Lofts at Mercer Landing to the university’s main entrance on Mercer University Drive, which is also receiving a facelift of columns and architectural detailing.

But, it’s not quite finished.

Brumley said the steel bridge still needs rebar, or reinforcing bars, put in, and construction workers with Sierra Development are also getting ready to install concrete decking.

Lights will be added to the bridge in the coming weeks, and the university will have access to the computer-controlled system that can change the colors of the lights, said Clay Murphey, Macon-Bibb SPLOST manager, in a report from the Telegraph’s Liz Fabian.

In the article, Murphey said there are about three million color combinations.

All of this will continue to cause intermittent road closures, Brumley said, that may be impacted by the weather.

On the bridge, a sign reads: “Welcome to Mercer and the new gateway to downtown Macon.”

Work continues across Mercer University Dr. as construction employees work on the new hotel.

Jenna Eason
Work continues across Mercer University Dr. as construction employees work on the new hotel.

Mercer University Drive which becomes Little Richard Penniman Boulevard has been billed the new gateway to downtown, Brumley said, because it will eventually go straight to Second Street. A sidewalk and bike lanes will also be added before the end of 2016.

The bottom floor of the Lofts at Mercer Landing will house office space for the university, and several departments has already begun the transition to the new space.

Additionally, Brumley said students can expect several food options for buildings surrounding the Lofts, including Papa John’s Pizza, Momma Goldberg’s Deli and Chen’s Wok. The university is continuing to seek out other restaurants for the food court.

In other construction news, the dedication of Phi Beta Kappa Plaza next to Willingham marked its completion Saturday, April 9.

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About the Contributors
Conner Wood, Editor in Chief

Conner Wood is a senior journalism student at Mercer University's Center for Collaborative Journalism. She has contributed to The Cluster since her freshman...

Jenna Eason, Managing Editor

Jenna is from a small town in south Georgia. She is a journalism major with an anthropology and photography minor.

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Pedestrian bridge installed, construction continues