QUENTINSBURGH- In Quentinsburgh, a lot of work has been underway in preparation for the 2016 Pancontinental Games. Preparations to date have included everything from building hotels to adding express service to certain metro lines. However, work is finally wrapping up in one of the most important areas of the city.
The area in Eastern Quentinsburgh just outside of the suburb of Gillepsie known collectively as the Spectrum Geolympiad Complex is home to a very large amount of venues for the 2016 Geolympiad. Perhaps the most well known is Spectrum Geolympiad Stadium, a huge building complex consisting of five full-size soccer (football) stadiums. Surrounding Spectrum Geolympiad Stadium are the Geolympiad Aquatics Center, K. Arnolds Stadium, Kolden Center, Roman N. Barker Stadium, Glofish.Com Arena, and more. The area is also connected to the nearby venues at Read University by elevated tram.
However, The Quentinsburgh Geolympiad Bid Committee knew the second Quentinsburgh made it to the final round of selections for host cities that it would be necessary to redevelop the area. The venues, most originally built as separate and unrelated entities, needed to be connected and made into one large complex of venues for the big event. While the buildings themselves were fine, the roadways running through the “complex” were small and disorganized. The tram between venues had been built already and helped this issue greatly, but it didn’t solve the issues with bus and shuttle traffic, parking, or anything else.
The bid committee and the Quentins Department Of Transportation immediately began work on a redevelopment project, including new and improved roadways through, around, and leading to the stadiums. After a long period of work, the project is nearing completion.
Among the biggest changes are the roadway alignment around Spectrum Geolympiad Stadium and the addition of a new transit center operated by QUARTA.
The roads surrounding Spectrum Geolympiad Stadium before the redevelopment of the area were far too small for a venue that big, and had no real flow. They didn’t connect to the roads surrounding the Spectrum Geolympiad Aquatic Center, nor did they make it possible to create convenient drop-off lanes and bus stops. The new development has changed this. Portions of Town Street and other unnamed streets were realigned with each other to create a large bottle-shaped loop now named Spectrum Geolympiad Complex Parkway. This realignment came with improvements to nearby parking and the addition of new sidewalks, walkways and pedestrian areas to the area. Drivers can now freely loop clockwise around the new loop with easy access to each venue and parking.
Along with the basic change in alignment and traffic flow, a bus only lane on the clockwise part of the road was added, as well as the creation of a new transit center for buses that stop at the complex. The transit center, officially Spectrum Geolympiad Complex Transit Center, is located just north of the north wing of Spectrum Geolympiad Stadium. It includes a much improved bus stop on all three QLink Bus Rapid Transit Lines, a collection of bus stops for feeder buses, a ticketing and fare kiosk and pedestrian access to the Spectrum Geolympiad Tram and the nearby QLine subway stations on routes (7) and (11). A smaller park and ride area is expected to be added to the transit center relatively soon.
These large improvements have been under development for about two years; however, the needed improvements and planned redevelopment was kept somewhat on the down low, as to not negatively impact people’s view of Quentinsburgh being fully prepared to host the big event. Committee member Jennifer Morgantown said that the element of surprise of a big reveal would be better anyway, as supporters would see how much of a positive change took place in the area in preparation.
“It’s one thing to say ‘This is what’s wrong with it now and here’s how we plan to fix it.” It’s something else entirely to show people the good parts of the before and then reveal how much better it is after further improvements. By doing the second option, it made the big reveal of the new Spectrum Geolympiad Complex that much better,” Morgantown stated on the issue.
Other large improvements include the widening and improvements to Kolden Road between Horizon Pkwy and U-204 to make it easier to reach the venues by car, improvements to the road in front of Glofish.Com Arena (now Glofish Arena Parkway) and the addition and improvements of tram stops on the Geolympiad Complex Tram.