They could not figure out how to get folks into the stadium for the concert. I have never seen a city and university so inept at doing traffic and parking. It would be comical if it didn’t happen week after week during football and basketball season. The concert is being delayed to allow everyone to park and get into the stadium.
My wife is there. She thinks they sold more parking passes than there are spaces.
Thank goodness, she and her companions got there early. It sounds like a mess.
It is virtually impossible to model traffic for an event like this. Football games have quite a few variables - weather, kickoff time, attendance, number of first-time/visiting fans. Concerts eliminate all of that. First RRS concert, at least in a while. Odd to think it would come off without a hitch.
My sister texted in traffic on 49. Tough to get in/out of RRS and campus with only the one major interstate. The way campus and downtown have meshed together, and the residential areas on all other sides, these type events are pretty challenging.
They will learn.
I have already had to rethink my timetable for games given the additional number of people for big games, and the route required to get to my parking spot. Thank goodness they standardized routes - when you could just go however you wanted to the traffic flow would change, game to game. One week it would be easy and someone would post it on a message board and 300 additional people would try that route, clogging it up.
The worst case scenario is an 11am game that is soldout. No time to get many folks there very early for tailgating.
They have never learned anything. EVER.
They learned a couple of things, over the years. One, they added room in lots for tents. That took a while.
Two, they tried to coordinate the gate for entry and the parking lot.
Three, they created the color-coded routes to parking lots. Given the layout of Fayetteville, that was an amazing triumph.
Hard to learn much when you have 35K for a Chad Morris game.
I had no problem with parking. Then again I did get there early. But getting into the stadium was a complete mess. They didn’t start on time and the portable handheld scanners were nearly useless.
They had to delay the beginning of the show because there were so few people in the stands.
We made it inside the Stadium about 6:45 but only because I know every side street to navigate around the major malfunction areas. This was the Texas game day on steroids tonight. I have been harping on the absolute pathetic job they do at getting people in/out for years. It’s really frustrating they can’t improve week after week or season after season and get it right. We had someone scanning tickets at entry 12 so that part went ok. Arkansas showed out tonight. Great crowd.
I saw where someone posted something to Bobby Bones. They said it took them 3 hours to drive 4 miles. Pretty sad if true. I can see that being the case if you had no knowledge of the city. I made the call to get off at Porter road and that probably saved me 1-1.5 hours because traffic was backed up to the curve past the Fayetteville auto park at 5:40. I have been to NASCAR events with 200,000 plus people and gotten in and out much quicker than a 55k football game day in Fayetteville.
I’m told that no town that has hosted this event has been able to start on time because of traffic logistics. You just don’t have a way to let that many arrive at the same time.
My brother, his wife, and another couple were in town for the concert, getting past the red light at Sang and off 49 to get on MLK was a cluster. They should have made the scholarship/parking lane as soon as you got off 49. I would have turned at Sang and gone in the back way to lot 72, but he was in front of me. Their seats were Touchdown Club, while ours were SEC club. So, we got separated on leaving, I knew to take a right out of lot 72 and hit the back streets working my way to Nettleship and then Sang, they sat in the parking lot and were 45-50 minutes getting home after we did, lol. It didn’t bother me too, they’re all OU fans.
As to selling too many parking passes, Lot 72 had several empties, I was surprised for a sold out lot.
Fayetteville is always gridlocked before and after a big football game, and I think there were thousands more there last night than have ever been there for a game. Hunter Yurachek asked me if I could convey in what I wrote how bad they expected traffic to be. He said they had been told by leaders at other schools how different traffic is for concerts on campus. He said for football games people arrive throughout the day, but for concerts they arrive within two hours of the show starting.
It did not take me that long to get to the show last night, but I’ve also lived in Fayetteville for almost 20 years. What is typically a 15-minute drive from my house took about 25. I went out of my normal route and took a couple of different roads knowing what traffic would be like elsewhere. If you can get to campus from the east, things are much easier.
I’ve got my secret paths, too. I will never reveal them.
I chose parking passes at the Garland parking garage. It was a good decision. We had north end zone seats and we were home 40-45 minutes after the show ended. I told my crew to make double time once we got outside the stadium. We took Garland back to 49 and never slowed down once. I can’t imagine what traffic was like 45 minutes to an hour later. I would give them a pass on traffic last night if it wasn’t a weekly event before/after most home football games.
A large percentage of football fans have been to lots of football games in Fayetteville and know their way around.
Last night, there were probably thousands who had never been in Fayetteville before.
Traffic control and stadium entry was terrible. The answer on traffic to me is more remote bus shuttle (say The mall area, not Dickson) with dedicated bus routs only closer to the stadium .They do this with Dart in Dallas and it works very well. I know we don’t have that kind of infa structure , but we have enough to make it work here, too.
My wife and I experienced this vicariously through my sister and BIL, who went to the concert. My wife and I talked about U2’s opening tour show in Tulsa a few years ago (I first saw the in 1983 prior to starting at UA…and arrived as the only student, or so it seemed, who had ever heard of them…so any traffic was a labor of love).
Downtown Tulsa is a walk in the park compared to Fayetteville: downtown hosts a large work contingency everyday (not 78K, and not now when so many are working remotely). It is surrounded by the inner-dispersal loop (IDL) which is 2-3 lanes, each way, of interstate traffic. We ate outside the IDL and “snuck in” on a one-way street that eventually led to one of the arterial routes to the BOK. Our drive, 1.5 miles or so, was about 5 minutes to the parking garage, in which our navigation took longer than the drive.
We know friends whose drive to U2 was 30 minutes from the IDL to parking spot, or about twice our time. The line getting in was far worse than the traffic/parking situation.
That was for +/-18K, not 78K. But the comparison is apt:
- RRS is surrounded by neighborhoods and a limited-access university campus, not interstate highways
- parking is single level, largely, while Tulsa has vertical parking structures
- RRS has 6-8 entrances, while the BOK had 4 for U2, or 4500/entrance at BOK vs 9K at RRS
Shuttle traffic simply means you are NOT using available parking around campus and forcing folks to find it a long way away. Drake Field might be the only nearby location that has sufficient empty pavement (ie, runways) that could serve as parking. I joke a little about that, but you need massive concrete area for parking for shuttles. Not sure there is anything else around not being used already.
The learning curve for colleges involves two things: the artist gets the ticket sales and the college gest parking and concessions. How can you entice people to get there 3-4 hours early, so that they spend more money? Would fans show up for a food truck court in old lot 44 vs. a “reservation required” meal at a nice restaurant?
That points in the right direction - monetizing/incentivizing early arrival to reduce traffic issues. We do that with tailgating for ballgames.
I had the same thought. There are some Band-Aids that might improve traffic flow some, but the location of the stadium is the biggest detriment to an efficient traffic flow.
Football fans are use to going to games in stadiums. Concert goers not so.
Football fans know the routine. Last night was the second concert I attended at a stadium. U2 at Cowboy stadium the first. It went pretty smooth. Probably because there’s a lot of parking.
Too many people showed up last night thinking they would be able to get in 15-20 minutes before the concert kind of like they do for football.
It’s only gonna happen once every 5 years. Not worth worrying about.
My biggest issue was getting into the stadium. Those little handheld readers that they were using could not read my phone. The guy asked me to increase the brightness. It was already on bright. I can always get the readers used by the U of A to accept my ticket. This guy must have tried about 10 or 15 passes at my ticket before it took. And there weren’t as many scanners as for football.
I confess that I left early. I may live nearby, but I know how long it takes me to get out of lot 56 for football and I was in 56 for the concert. I also had to be at the dog show Sunday morning.
The scanners were from Ticketmaster. They were not the normal UA kiosks.