Thursday, June 30, 2022

IPF installs temporary fencing along Red Cedar to increase safety measures

February 10, 2022
Students are oblivious as they walk by the temporary fence on Red Cedar road. The fence was put up as a result of the loss of Grand Valley student Brendan Santo. Shot on Feb 10, 2022
Students are oblivious as they walk by the temporary fence on Red Cedar road. The fence was put up as a result of the loss of Grand Valley student Brendan Santo. Shot on Feb 10, 2022 —
Photo by Madison Norfleet | The State News

MSU Infrastructure Planning and Facilities, or IPF, installed temporary fencing by the Red Cedar river along Beal Street and West Circle Drive, following a change.org petition started by students at the end of January. 

The petition titled, “Make MSU’s Red Cedar River Areas Safe” was started after the body of missing Grand Valley State University student Brendan Santo was found in the river on Jan. 21.

IPF communications and learning manager Fred Woodhams said the temporary fencing is 2,200 linear feet and located behind the Kellogg Center spanning to Beal Street and the intersection with West Circle Drive. 

“We’re constantly evaluating improvements to campus to further safety and security of the community and guests,” Woodhams said. “We’ve been having conversations about the particular space near the Red Cedar river that was mentioned in that petition.”

The installation of the temporary fencing began Jan. 26 and was completed Feb. 7. 

Woodhams said designs are in the works for a permanent fencing solution that take into account the aesthetic character of that stretch of the river. Permanent fencing is expected to be completed during the summer.

“The banks along that part of the river are steep and so we wanted to ensure the safety of all of the campus community and any visitors to campus,” Woodhams said. 

Since it was posted last month, the petition has received over 20,580 signatures. 

Petition organizers called on MSU to “put barriers, lighting and signage in place to prevent any further tragedies along the Red Cedar River and the ravine.”

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