When 100,00 fans descend on downtown Indianapolis for the Super Bowl on Feb. 5, the city will be ready. Indianapolis unveiled a detailed traffic management plan last week that includes additional police officers and free rides on city buses, according to the Washington Post.
The Super Bowl Host Committee’s Lori Miser said several streets will be restricted or partially closed throughout downtown beginning Jan. 19, particularly in the vicinity of Lucas Oil Stadium and the nearby Super Bowl Village. Restrictions will start slow, but will be ramped up gradually as game day approaches.
This Super Bowl is slated to be different than previous games because the game and related events will be condensed into the downtown area instead of a several-mile radius.
Deputy Police Chief Mike Bates told the Post that 80-100 extra police officers will be stationed on downtown street corners to direct traffic on key days. Miser said the city buses will offer free rides on Super Bowl Sunday and for the three days before the game.
Between 100,000 to 150,000 fans are slated to attend the game or pregame events, and officials say another 100,000 work downtown. Parking could be an issue; Super Bowl organizers say there are an estimated 88,000 parking spaces downtown.
Organizers said the NFL has made arrangements with most downtown parking garages for fans, and downtown parking lots may charge event parking prices at times in the week leading up to the big game.
Miser said organizers had contacted big downtown employers like Eli Lilly & Co. and asked them to have employees work from home or stagger their hours whenever possible in the week before the game to minimize downtown congestion. Carpooling was also suggested, and organizers said a $2 shuttle service would be offered at three locations.
She said officials were recommending two alternate routes to help motorists bypass the downtown area. One circles the area clockwise, the other counter-clockwise. Major interstates will be open during the Super Bowl period, organizers said.