Last modified: Wednesday, September 7, 2011
IU Athletics details game day traffic, alternative routes; fans strongly encouraged to arrive early
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aug. 6, 2011
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Due to construction to and in Bloomington, IU Athletics encourages all football fans to arrive at Memorial Stadium as early as possible. Significant traffic delays on football game days are expected. While IU Athletics has been working with local law enforcement, the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT), and its contractors to limit traffic congestion on football game days as much as possible, there will be traffic delays which will get worse closer to kickoff. IU Athletics is also enacting a comprehensive communication effort to inform fans of delays, alternative routes, and traffic updates.
Efforts to improve game day traffic include, but are not limited to: creatively developing alternative routes to Memorial Stadium; adjusting traffic patterns to facilitate the new alternative routes; aggressively communicating the traffic challenges and ways to address them; utilizing INDOT's computer generated traffic simulator to analyze the effectiveness of different routes and traffic patterns; purchasing more electronic signs to direct traffic to use alternative routes; dedicating a press box suite to support traffic communication on game days; months of meetings and unprecedented cooperation among local law enforcement, INDOT, and INDOT contractors; and encouraging fans to arrive early through billboards in Indianapolis, Terre Haute, and Evansville. Parking lots around Memorial Stadium will open a minimum of five hours before kickoff, and Hoosier Village will open three hours before kickoff. Ticket offices around Memorial Stadium will open at 10 a.m. this Saturday.
"Road construction will make game day traffic a mess," said Indiana University Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass. "Recognizing these challenges, we are making every effort to communicate to fans and are working extensively with local law enforcement, INDOT, and its contractors to get you to Memorial Stadium before kickoff. We cannot stress enough how important it is for fans to plan their route carefully and arrive early. If you can, get to the stadium when the lots open and enjoy your pregame tailgating or otherwise hanging out in Bloomington."
Memorial Stadium parking lots will open five hours prior to kickoff. In addition to tailgating, fans will have the opportunity to enjoy many pregame activities. The IU Alumni Association's Hoosier Village, where fans can enjoy food, beverage, music, and fellowship will open three hours before kickoff. "The Walk" will take place two hours and 15 minutes before kickoff. Fans are encouraged to line up between Assembly Hall and the east side of Memorial Stadium to cheer the players on their entrance into Memorial Stadium. Children can play in the Kid Zone and Knothole Park starting 90 minutes before the start of the game. This Saturday at 9:30 a.m. the Men's and Women's Cross Country teams host the Indiana Open, and at noon the Volleyball team hosts Niagra at University Gym. This Saturday from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., fans can view the Big Ten Mobile Tour next to Hoosier Village displaying the Big Ten championship trophy. The ESPN Gridiron Tour Sponsored by Jeep will be open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. next to the DeVault Alumni Center on 17th Street Fans are also encouraged to visit Bloomington's many restaurants and taverns before the game. For the comfort of our early arriving and other fans, IU Athletics is providing 140 port-o-lets (up from 90 last year) in the lots surrounding Memorial Stadium.
In addition to the construction taking place on the 45/46 Bypass in Bloomington, construction is also taking place at the S.R. 37 exit off of I-465 on the south side of Indianapolis. Delays at this interchange are likely and fans are encouraged to consider taking alternative routes such as S.R. 67 or I-65 and S.R. 46 to Bloomington.
The pregame and postgame traffic patterns have been modified this season to support the seven alternative routes to and from Memorial Stadium. Fans are encouraged to review the alternative route and traffic pattern map to plan their routes carefully. INDOT has advised that Third Street will be an available alternative route notwithstanding the recent construction in that corridor. Fans should be aware that local law enforcement may adjust anticipated traffic patterns to improve traffic based on their game day observations.
To help offset confusion and avoidable traffic delays, IU Athletics will send messages providing detailed traffic information to ticket holders prior to each home game. These communications include letters to ticket holders warning of potential delays and containing a map of alternative routes to Memorial Stadium, a Twitter page (Twitter.com/IUTraffic) and e-mails containing links to maps and traffic updates. Information regarding game day traffic patterns can also be found by visiting IUHoosiers.com, and "real time" game day traffic information will be posted on twitter at @IUTraffic. These efforts are designed to give fans information to help mitigate traffic problems.
Bloomington residents not attending IU games are encouraged to avoid the 45/46 Bypass and use alternative routes on football game days not only to help with football traffic, but to avoid creating traffic delays for themselves.
INDOT has contributed both expertise and resources to the game-day traffic plan. In addition to recommendations from traffic engineers, INDOT will alter traffic signals along both the SR 37 and the SR 67 corridors and at the I-465/ SR 37 exit on game days to manage the increased traffic flow. INDOT will also be monitoring several traffic cameras on I-465 and SR 37 and is able to alert motorists via electronic highway message signs to use alternative routes such as SR 67 in the event of accidents or unusually high traffic. INDOT is also able to measure average travel times from Indianapolis using a new detection technology that pinpoints drive time from several locations along the route. This data will be used to further analyze travel time to improve game day traffic patterns in the future.
Fans are advised that post game traffic is anticipated to be at least as big a challenge as pregame traffic. Please be patient and anticipate delays. The postgame traffic pattern has been modified to utilize 17th Street as a primary alternative route away from the stadium to S.R. 37. Fans are encouraged to take their time when exiting the stadium and to follow instructions from local law enforcement when leaving the stadium. These instructions might include directing postgame traffic away from normal exit routes. Specifically, for example, you may be directed to the south or east to get you away from the stadium before heading north to get back to Indianapolis or Fort Wayne.