West University Avenue sign in Gainesville

A driver and passenger died in an Saturday morning crash on West University, according to the Gainesville Police Department (GPD). 

GPD said the vehicle was traveling at a high rate of speed at 2:14 a.m. when it hit a raised median around the 3200 block of West University Avenue—which is just northwest of the UF campus. After hitting the median, the car careened toward the south side of the road, struck a wall, then crashed into a traffic signal pole and burst into flames. 

Police did not immediately identify the two deceased persons but said in a press release no one else was involved in the accident. GPD is still investigating what happened. 

The crash and subsequent fire took out the traffic light at the intersection of West University Avenue and NW 34th Street, but it is now working again. 

The fatal accident comes after recent pedestrian deaths on the section of West University that runs along the northeast edge of the UF campus. Those deaths sparked a wave of advocacy for safety measures, leading GPD to step up patrols on Gainesville's busiest roads, including both West University and NW 34th Street.  

Publisher for Mainstreet Daily News

J.C. Derrick is publisher for Mainstreet Daily News. He spent 18 years covering sports, education, and politics in Texas and Washington, D.C., before joining Mainstreet in 2020.

(2) comments


I truly hope this doesn't give another cause for changing University Ave.


3200 block of West University Avenue is about as close to the northwest corner of UF campus as Jack Nicklaus was to downtown Augusta GA the last time he won the Masters.

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