August 20, 2020

Major makeover transforms Third Street into pedestrian-friendly corridor

Note to journalists: Journalists visiting campus should follow visitor health guidelines.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The $1 million Third Street renovation is nearing completion as Purdue University transforms the area into a safer, pedestrian-friendly corridor between student residences and the north academic areas of campus.

Students can now use Third Street’s new bicycle paths and walkways, which are adorned with colorful surface designs of the Motion P, Boilermaker Special, the Bell Tower, the World’s Largest Bass Drum, and the Gateway to the Future arch and other iconic University symbols. Updates in the next few weeks will add more graphics with Purdue’s new branded messaging, “Every Giant Leap Starts with One Small Step.”

“We have reached a key step on our Third Street conversion, allowing us to open this section of campus to pedestrian traffic just as we welcome back students for in-person instruction and advance efforts in support of our overall Protect Purdue de-densification and social distance efforts,” said Michael B. Cline, senior vice president of administrative operations.

cline-thirdstreetP The iconic Motion P is clearly visible from a westward view of the new Third Street, which has been converted into a pedestrian-friendly corridor for Purdue students walking or bicycling to class from their residence halls on the west edge of campus. (Purdue photo/Mark Simons) Download image

The new look and feel of Third Street align with Purdue’s West Lafayette campus master plan to create a safer and more attractive pedestrian zone for walkers and bicyclists by eliminating vehicular traffic from Martin Jischke Drive to University Street.

“Closing Third Street to vehicular traffic is part of Purdue’s overall plan to alleviate congestion in this busy area of campus,” Cline said. “Amid COVID-19, this project’s timeliness has additional importance as we take measures to increase the safety and health of our Purdue community and ease the movement around our student living spaces.”

The installation of additional graphic surfaces along with upcoming work on Hagle Hall, the planned new home of Purdue Bands & Orchestras at the southeast corner of Third and Russell streets, will result in shifts in the pedestrian traffic patterns along Third Street, Cline said.

As a result of the project, Waldron Street and two adjacent alleyways are closed at Third Street and culs-de-sac were constructed. North-south vehicular traffic remains unchanged on Martin Jischke Drive, and Russell and University streets, with the exception that turns onto the pedestrian portion of Third Street are prohibited. Emergency service vehicles will be permitted to use Third Street when necessary.  

Project improvements are being coordinated with the city of West Lafayette. 

Media Contact: Tim Doty,

Sources: Michael B. Cline, 

Related Release:

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