Motion of Change

Preserving the Wetlands

Kate Miller

An on-campus bridge no longer exists. The bridge that connected parking lots 14 and 15 on the St. Scholastica campus was removed last year due to some environmental issues the bridge could have caused.

When the connector between lots 14 and 15 started to get run down, students inquired about an update. They were concerned over the safety of the bridge and wished for something to be done. Unbeknownst to them, the bridge originally should not have existed for the length of time it had been on campus. When brought to the attention of staff members of the college by students, the realization of the risk the bridge held towards the environment, it was promptly taken down.

The bridge was first put up to aid in the construction process of student apartments Scanlon and Kerst. The bridge provided passage over a swamp area. After construction was completed, the bridge should have been taken down as the last step in the construction process.

When the bridge was taken down, lots 14 and 15 lost an ideal crossing point for students in the farther back apartments. The hope was for something else to be built again in its place, however, due to the natural environment surrounding the bridge another structure could not be built.

Structures like the bridge should not be built on wetland areas. Wetlands that are untouched by human structures help to neutralize overall water quality in the world. In addition to
healthier water, wetlands can provide safe environments for animals, sometimes including endangered species. The goal of removing the bridge was to stop negative impact on the surrounding environment. Rebuilding will not occur.

When speaking with Student Body Vice President Monica Boyer, a senior communication and organizational behavior major, she gave the Student Senate Perspective for the bridge story. Senate was involved due to the student opinions encircling the convenience the bridge held. After the realization the bridge would not be brought back, Senate could do not much else.

However, Boyer stated, “We would be open to pursuing other ideas if students have them! Students can email the senate account with their concerns and we will promptly respond.”

Any student wishing to voice their opinion on possible projects to provide the convenience students want while also protecting the natural environment on campus should share their ideas with student senate and be the first motion of change.