Contact: Jenni Smith
SMU News & Media Relations
(214) 768-7650


December 18, 2001


DALLAS (SMU) -- Visitors on skates, skateboards and trick bikes will no longer be permitted on the campus of Southern Methodist University, according to a new safety policy adopted by the university this month.

Concerns over the possibility of injury to area youths and possible damage to university property were cited as the reasons for the policy change.

“We don’t want to see anyone get hurt,” said SMU Chief of Police Aaron Graves. “Our campus has a lot of steps, handrails, cobblestone walkways, garages and benches that are designed for functional purposes and are not safe for recreational uses. By making this policy change, we are seeking to be proactive to prevent any accidents or damage.”

Individuals found on the campus with skates, scooters, skateboards and trick bikes will be asked by SMU police officers to leave the campus. They can be cited for trespassing or vandalism if they ignore warnings or damage university property. Graves said his officers aggressively patrol the campus and will be looking for skateboarding activity during the upcoming Christmas holidays when youths are out of school.

Out of safety concerns, SMU employees have called the SMU Police Department to report skateboarding behavior by area youths, Graves said.

“Our sidewalks are not wide enough for pedestrians and skateboards,” Graves said. “Many of our benches and buildings are designed with precast sandstone that can be fragile. This policy has been adopted to protect area youth in the community as well as the university. Our campus was not designed to be a skating area.”