Cathy Connolly (D, HD 13)

Cathy Connolly

Legislators in the Wyoming House introduced three amendments Tuesday to House Bill 293, which is expected to jump-start construction of dormitories on the University of Wyoming’s campus, in an attempt to assuage concerns about a potential closure of 15th Street.

Those concerns arose last week after careful readers of the bill noted the construction is expected to create “restricted access” to the road.

The House only passed one of those amendments — the one sponsored by Rep. Cathy Connolly, D-Laramie — which ensures that 15th Street is no longer considered a site for new dorms.

The bill originally stated that construction could extend to the east side of 15th Street. Connolly’s amendment ensures it stops at the west side.

Her amendment requires the Legislature’s task force on UW housing to also include a representative of the Laramie community to be appointed by the mayor.

At the request of Speaker Steve Harshman, R-Casper, the House killed an amendment that would clarify that “nothing in this section shall be interpreted to preclude or require the closure of 15th Street from Ivinson (Avenue) to Lewis Street to vehicular traffic.”

Harshman asked the House to kill another amendment that would have required two of the four legislators on the legislative task force to be from Albany County.

He suggested representation from local legislators was not necessary since Kermit Brown, current UW trustee and former legislator, is likely to continue serving on the task force.

“The city of Laramie’s going to be well-represented,” he said.

Rep. Dan Zwonitzer, R-Cheyenne, said legislators are likely to bring more amendments before the bill’s final vote in the House today.

(1) comment


Thank you to the legislature for common sense. 15th street should NOT be the site for new dorms. Look at any big state campus out there and dorms will be within a walk or bus distance to class, but they will not be the centerpiece of campus. I don't know what UW is thinking. My guess is the people behind the 15th street plan do not understand universities and university life.

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