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Capital City ready for gameday traffic

Capital City ready for gameday traffic
(AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

Mayor Chris Beutler said Lincoln is ready to welcome Husker fans to the Capital City for another season of Nebraska football. The first of the Huskers’ seven home games starts at 7 p.m. Saturday, September 2 against Arkansas State.

IMPORTANT REMINDERS
· The University of Nebraska has implemented a clear bag policy to enter Memorial Stadium this year. Backpacks and umbrellas are also not allowed in the stadium.

· Fans should lock their vehicles and move valuable items out of sight.

· Drinking alcohol is prohibited on City streets, parking lots, garages and sidewalks, including the trail between Haymarket Park and 8th Street.

· The sale of tickets, souvenirs or other items is not allowed on City streets or sidewalks.

· Officers will issue citations for violations that inhibit the use of the street or sidewalk.

· The sale of food, flowers or balloons requires a sidewalk vendor permit.

To avoid gameday traffic and parking challenges, City officials recommend visiting lincoln.ne.gov (keyword: closures) for maps and street construction information, planning ahead for parking, arriving early, celebrating downtown after games and using StarTran’s Big Red Express (startran.lincoln.ne.gov).

GETTING TO AND FROM THE GAME

To improve the traffic experience on game day, the Traffic Engineering Section of the City Public Works and Utilities Department, the Lincoln Police Department, the UNL Police Department and Nebraska Department of Transportation (NDOT) work together. The City provides traffic control on Lincoln streets while NDOT helps coordinate traffic on I-180 and I-80. Coordination efforts include traffic planning, pre- and post-game messaging, planned lane and ramp closures and sharing of incidents with all parties involved as they happen.

On football game days, Interstate 80 exits at I-180/Downtown and 27th Street can be congested, so visitors are encouraged to use other routes into Lincoln:
· From the east, take the Hwy. 6/Cornhusker Hwy. exit 409. Turn south at State Fair Park Drive and west on Salt Creek Roadway to reach Memorial Stadium, the Champion’s Club and parking facilities east of the stadium and in the Haymarket.

· From the west, use exit I-80 at Homestead Expressway/Hwy. 77 South, then go east on Rosa Parks Way.

· Those using I-80 who plan to park in the Haymarket Park lots will experience less congestion if they enter Lincoln using the airport exit 399.

· The I-80 westbound on-ramp from Highway 6/West “O” Street has been permanently closed. Motorists should use the N.W. 48th Street interchange. The eastbound I-80 off-ramp in this area also has been permanently closed.

Those entering Lincoln on southbound I-180/9th Street, are strongly encouraged to use “N” Street and Arena Drive to access the Haymarket, the Haymarket parking garages and Pinnacle Bank Arena. To improve traffic flow, the following changes will be in effect before and after the games:
· Two hours before kickoff, southbound 9th Street will be closed starting at the roundabout at 9th Street and Salt Creek Roadway near Memorial Stadium. The street will reopen once vehicles have left the stadium area after the game.

· Salt Creek Roadway will have lane restrictions at 14th Street to better manage traffic congestion.

· 16th Street from “X” to Vine streets will be one-way southbound following the game.

· Postgame traffic on northbound 10th Street from “Q” to “T” streets will be restricted to I-180. No traffic will be allowed to go past the stadium on 10th Street. The street will reopen once vehicles have left the stadium area after the game.

Other gameday events include the Haymarket Farmers Market every Saturday through October 14 and Railyard entertainment and activities on Fridays and Saturdays. The Cube in the Railyard will show football games all day on Saturdays. The area of the Haymarket Farmers Market will close from 5:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. every Saturday through October 14. North 7th and 8th streets as well as Canopy Street will close from “P” to “Q” streets. “P” Street will close from 7th to 8th Street and “Q” Street will close from 7th to Canopy streets.

Some City road construction projects may impact gameday traffic:
· N. 27th Street from Arbor Rd. to Wildcat Dr. will be restricted to single lanes of traffic until mid-November. Both the entrance and exit for I-80 remain open at that location.

· N. 33rd Street from Holdrege Street to Huntington Ave. will be closed until mid-September.

· 10th Street from Sun Valley Blvd. to Military Rd. (the 10th Street bridge over Salt Creek) is closed for the entire season.

· 17th Street from “Q” to Vine streets (in the UNL City Campus) has been reduced to a single northbound lane to prepare for the demolition of the Cather-Pound Residence Hall.

· 16th Street from Vine to “Q” streets (in the UNL City Campus) has been converted from one-way southbound to two-way traffic with a bike lane on each side.

· Vine Street from N. Antelope Valley Pkwy. to 16th Street (in the UNL City Campus) has been reduced to a single east and westbound lane with a bike lane in each direction.

· Traffic signals have been removed at the intersections of 16th and Vine, 16th and “S”, 16th and “R”, and 17th and “R” streets (in the UNL City Campus). Those intersections are now four-way stops.

Other traffic reminders:
· Stadium Drive west of the stadium will be closed to all vehicular traffic. Passenger drop-off and pick-up will not be allowed in front of the Stadium before or after the game. Fans can be dropped off and picked up at 10th and Charleston streets and 12th and “R” streets.

· Only StarTran buses and those using UNL lots 12, 22 and 23 or handicapped parking will be allowed west of 16th Street on Vine.

· Charter buses will park on “W” Street between 14th and 16th streets.

Those choosing to ride bicycles to the game have several options:
· The “N” Street Cycle Track is a protected bikeway for the exclusive use of cyclists on the south side of “N” Street from 23rd Street to Arena Drive.

· Downtown bike lanes are on 14th Street from “L” to “R” streets and on 11th Street from “Q” to “D” streets.

· Bike lanes are now open on Vine and 16th streets on UNL City’s Campus.

· Bike UNL is offering free bike valet service for all home games. Cyclists can drop off their bikes on the east side of Cook Pavilion near 14th and “W” streets two hours prior to kickoff. For more information, visit bike.unl.edu/bikevalet or call 402-472-4777.

GAMEDAY PARKING

Parking meters are enforced Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The following fine system is in effect:
· If the ticket is paid online within seven days from when it is written, the fine is $9.

· If the ticket is paid in person or through the mail within seven days, the fine is $10.

· If the ticket is paid after seven days, the fine is $25 in person or by mail or $24 online.

To avoid parking tickets, fans can purchase a $10 tag for all-day, on-street parking in metered stalls from any City employee wearing a Park & Go shirt at City-operated parking facilities.

Fans can also reserve pre-paid parking in the Haymarket and other City garages through parkandgo.org. Rates for the four West Haymarket garages are $20, and the other rates vary by garage. Limited parking will be available for $25 in the VIP Parking Garage attached to the southwest side of Pinnacle Bank Arena. Parking garages available in the West Haymarket are:
· Red 1, 555 “R” Street

· Green 2, 530 “P” Street

· Blue 3, 535 “P” Street

· Lumberworks, 700 “N” Street

Reserved, reduced-price, pre-paid football parking is also available through parkandgo.org for these locations:
· County-City lots – North (10th and “K”), South (701 S. 10th) and West (802 “J”) – $15 on site and $10 online

· Carriage Park (1120 “L”), Cornhusker Square (1220 “L”) and Center Park (1100 “N”) – $20 on site, $15 online

· Haymarket (9th and “Q”), Lincoln Station South (7th and “P”), Market Place (10th and “Q”), Que Place (1111 “Q”), Red 1 (555 “R”), Green 2 (530 “P”), Blue 3 (535 “P”), University Square (101 N. 14th), Larson Building (1317 “Q”), West Depot lot (676 “O”), Lumberworks (700 “N”) – $25 on site, $20 online

· Sun Valley and Charleston St. lot near Oak Lake Park – vehicle parking is $10 on site and online; RV parking is $50 on site and $45 online

· “N” Street Gravel lot, “N” Street and Arena Drive – vehicle parking is $25 on site only; RV parking is $70 on site and $65 online

· 14th and New Hampshire lot – vehicle parking is $10, and RV parking is $20 (gameday purchase only)

Grills are not allowed in City garages. Grills are allowed at the 14th and New Hampshire lot and at the Sun Valley and Charleston lot. Fans planning to stay Friday night on City property must purchase their parking online and display the permit in their RV overnight. RV parking is not allowed at the Haymarket Park baseball/softball complex.

UNL parking lots will be available for use six hours prior to kick off. Gameday parking information and maps are available at parking.unl.edu/ (keyword: football). Parking is available at the following University areas on game days:
· 17th and “R” garage – $25 day of game, $175 season

· 19th and Vine garage – $25 day of game, $175 season

· 15th and Vine streets – $25

· 1410 “Q” St. – $25

· 16th and “X” streets – $25

· Anderson Hall, 16th St. between “P” and “Q” streets – $25

· Beadle Center, 19th St. north of “S” St. – $25

· 900 North 22nd St. – $25

· 22nd and Vine streets – $25

· 23rd and “W” streets – $25

· 1700 “Y” St – $25

· N. 14th and Court streets – $10

· 16th and Court streets – $10

· 14th Street and Military Road – $10

Wheelchair accessible parking is available for $25 per vehicle at UNL Lot 5, Stadium Drive and Salt Creek Roadway. Handicapped parking is available at:
· Mabel Lee Hall (vans only) – $25

· 14th and R streets – $25

· 14th and Avery garage – $25, with free cart shuttle

· 14th and “U” streets, east of Morrill Hall – $25

· 14th St. between Vine and “W” streets, free on-street parking where available

A number of private lots are available. Rates vary, and some offer season passes.

Vehicles blocking driveways, parked too close to the intersection, parked on public right of way or interfering with vehicle or pedestrian traffic will be towed. Vehicles will also be subject to towing if parked on job sites or driving lanes on streets or in unfinished areas. Vehicles towed by order of the Police or a Parking Control Officer are subject to a $50 towing fine in addition to the $49.53 required to retrieve a vehicle from the impoundment lot. The towing fine does not apply to cars towed from private lots.

BIG RED EXPRESS

In addition to its regular routes, StarTran will provide its Big Red Express service on Husker game days starting two hours before kickoff from six locations:
· The City Municipal Service Center (I-80 airport, exit 399), 949 W. Bond (take first right north of McDonald’s)

· Southeast Community College, 88th and “O” streets, south parking lot

· Holmes Lake, 70th Street and Normal, north end of lake

· Gateway Mall, 61st and “O” streets, north of JC Penney

· SouthPointe Pavilions, 27th and Pine Lake Road, south of Von Maur

· North Star High School (I-80 airport exit 403), 5801 N. 33rd St. (six blocks east of 27th Street and Folkways Blvd.)

Buses will drop off and depart from “R” Street between 12th and 14th streets. The last bus will leave the lot 45 minutes prior to kickoff. The cost is $5 each way, and exact change is required. Electronic signs will help direct fans to the Big Red Express locations. Big Red Express season tickets, good for round-trip travel for all home games, are available for $50, a $20 savings, at StarTran, 710 “J” Street; the SouthPointe Pavilions office; Scheel’s at SouthPointe; or at the lots on game day. Tickets also can be purchased via smart phone by texting “TOKEN” to 41411 to receive a download link. For more information, call 402-476-1234 or visit startran.lincoln.ne.gov.

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