The annual Tucson Festival of Books draws nearly 140,000 visitors to the University of Arizona over a two-day period. The logistical challenges of an event of this magnitude are formidable, with the surge of traffic congestion in and around campus and providing sufficient, available parking being near the top of the list.

The scale of the Festival makes distributing printed maps highlighting designated parking and road closures impractical, and standard navigation apps omitted these crucial event-specific directions. Seeking an advanced solution to traffic management for the 2016 Festival, the University of Arizona and event organizers worked with Metropia to ease congestion levels by encouraging carpooling to the event and assisting drivers in navigating campus and reaching the specially designated parking lots.

  • Metropia incorporated event-specific road closures into its database, steering users clear of any dead ends or unnecessary reroutes.
  • Metropia placed Festival of Book icons designating event parking lots directly on its trip reservation screen. By tapping the icons on the map or typing in the name of the event, users were navigated directly to the reserved parking lots.
  • Special rewards were offered to Metropia users who carpooled to the event using the app’s DUO feature.
  • Thanks to the integration of the event-prefered routes, users were able to easily locate event parking and avoid circling campus and encountering roadblocks along the way.
  • Ten percent of all Metropia trips to the event carried DUO carpoolers, reducing the strain on the roads and freeing up additional parking spots.
  • Beyond traffic management, event organizers were able to use Metropia’s data to clearly identify key arrival and departure trends for the Festival. This knowledge allowed them to better schedule staff and volunteers based on attendance and demand. Heatmaps showing anonymized concentrations of driver origins before heading to the festival will assist with marketing endeavors for the 2017 event.
  • Based on the results of this event, Metropia was contracted to provide similar services for the University of Arizona Spring Fling event as well as provide enhanced traffic mitigation and parking services for 2016 University of Arizona home football games.