ARLINGTON, Texas — The entertainment district in Arlington is going to be busy Friday night – very busy.
Here's what's on the docket: a Bad Bunny concert in AT&T Stadium at 7 p.m., a Texas Rangers game against the Toronto Blue Jays at 7:05 p.m. and a massive Texas high school football matchup (one of WFAA's top 5 games of the week, in fact) between Allen and Arlington Martin at 7 p.m. in Choctaw Stadium.
The Bad Bunny concert alone is expected to bring thousands of fans. His concerts in Houston and San Antonio have been massive hits, and the Dallas concert should be as well. Bad Bunny was named Spotify's most-streamed artist for the second year in a row.
Couple that with two sporting events, which bring in thousands of people apiece, respectively, and you have a brewing recipe for inundated traffic to the area.
This isn't the first time Arlington has hosted multiple events at once, however, or been a stranger to ushering people to and from marquee events. Dallas led the NFL last season with an average attendance of 93,421 fans, according to NFL data.
Arlington PD spokesperson Tim Ciesco told WFAA the department "prepares year round for slates like this to ensure we have all the staffing and plans in place to ensure our visitors have a good experience when they visit our city."
Police recommend a few tips to make your trip as smooth as possible.
- Plan ahead: The best thing fans can do when they get ready to make the trek to Arlington is to have a plan, Ciesco said. Eventgoers should know what routes you’re going to take to get into the city. Check ahead of time to see if there are going to be any construction projects that could impact your trip (Ex.: Starting Friday night, Hwy. 360 will be closed in both directions near Interstate 30 for bridge construction and those lanes won’t reopen until early Monday morning. Commuters who normally take Hwy. 360 south to get into Arlington might want to consider taking PGBT / Hwy 161 or Loop 820 to Interstate 30. Ciesco encouraged pre-purchasing parking or identify where you’d like to park, so that you can drive directly to that location when you come into Arlington instead of searching for spaces in the Entertainment District. Also, consider arriving early. Parking lots open several hours before each event. Traffic tends to be heaviest 30 to 60 minutes prior to the event start time.
- Be patient: Police ask drivers remain patient with officers directing traffic and with parking staff. There is more than 90,000 people expected to be at these events, collectively. They’re working to get fans in and out of the Entertainment District as quickly and as safe as possible. Police have put several traffic control measures into place before and especially after events – including lane closures, temporarily changing some roadways to one-way only, and forcing traffic to travel certain directions coming out of parking lots and at intersections – so you may not necessarily be able to leave Arlington the same way you came in. If you’re using a rideshare service, the pickup and drop-off location for AT&T Stadium is near Cowboys Lot 15, which is just west of the stadium along Randol Mill Road. Remember, those services are subject to availability, and so you may have to wait for some time before a driver is able to come get you.
- Be safe: Once you’ve arrived and parked, please remember to lock your vehicles before you head to the venues. Police say people should cross at designated crossings to get from the parking lots to the stadiums. Officers will be stationed at all the major intersections and will help get you across the roadways safely. Don’t drink and drive. In addition to all the personnel working security and traffic control, we will have officers patrolling the area looking for impaired drivers.
- Check bag policies: We also remind fans to check the bag / entry policies at each venue ahead of time, so you don’t get turned away at the entrance gate for bringing a prohibited item with you.
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