Event Management: Solving Congestion and Parking Challenges for UA Football Games
Like any large sporting event, University of Arizona football games see a huge influx of traffic on campus and around the stadium. Although both UA Athletics and Parking & Transportation Services [PTS] departments are committed to maintaining optimal congestion levels during home games, they were faced with several challenges for themselves and for ticket holders:
- Navigation apps did not accurately reflect traffic conditions on campus, nor did they direct drivers around special event road closures. This led to problematic navigation around campus and delays for fans expecting to arrive at the stadium at a certain time.
- While there were many parking lots available to fans, UA had no means of communicating which lots were full and which had ample parking as kickoff drew near. This resulted in drivers circling campus looking for a spot and increasing congestion.
UA Athletics and PTS departments met with Metropia to explore a solution for easing stadium congestion.
- Metropia engineers established a mini-Transportation Management Center on UA campus during home games. All on-campus road closures and live updates on congestion levels and parking lot availability were fed directly into the Metropia app.
- A live parking feature was integrated into the Metropia app which allowed users to choose from Free, Paid, Permitted, or Disability lots. The feature displayed the varying costs for paid lots as well as the current capacity levels of all lots, making it possible for users to select their desired lot before leaving for the stadium and receive accurate, turn-by-turn navigation directly to their destination.
- To reduce the number of vehicles entering and exiting campus, users were incentivized to use Metropia’s DUO social carpooling feature to share rides to the game. DUO carpools or 3 or more people were granted free parking at specific lots.
- The integration of UA PTS traffic management plans into the Metropia app made navigating across campus and around the special event road closures seamless. The enhanced data greatly increased the accuracy in travel time predictions for arrival at the stadium vs other consumer navigation apps and websites.
- For the first time fans had access to live parking availability updates, making for a far more convenient arrival experience.
- Metropia’s urban analytics team compiled user data to provide a previously unseen in-depth look at gameday traffic on and around campus. Driver origins, on-campus traffic flow, fan arrival and departure times, and parking lot preferences and capacity levels were all analyzed and presented in digestible formats to allow for a greater understanding of game day patterns and the planning of enhanced traffic mitigation strategies in the future.
- Due to the success of this program, UA will extend the partnership to improve traffic flow and parking lot management during basketball home games in the upcoming season.