Monday, January 30, 2012

With transportation plan delayed, Nets finally survey fans about transportation options regarding Barclays Center attendance

What a coincidence: a day after a public meeting in which officials revealed delays in the long-awaited Transportation Demand Management plan for the Barclays Center, Nets Basketball on January 27 sent "an important online survey about our move to Barclays Center in Brooklyn next season" to those on its mailing list.

The survey, which offered the opportunity to win "autographed merchandise, courtside seats to a NETS game or a NETS Fan Experience package!," seemed designed to alert people to the extensive public transportation options and deter them from driving.

However, should word-of-mouth or advertising attract drivers to non-arena-related garages or to residential streets in search of free parking, that will hamper the effort to promote transit use.

Last week, Arana Hankin, Director, Atlantic Yards Project, for Empire State Development suggested that the delay in the NBA season hampered development of the plan. Perhaps, but there's no reason why those on the Nets' mailing list could not have been previously surveyed.

Opening up

After asking demographic questions, the survey asked about past attendance at events at the following venues:
  • Citi Field in Queens, NY
  • Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA
  • Hoboken Sports Arena in Hoboken, NJ
  • Izod Center in East Rutherford, NJ
  • Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA
  • Madison Square Garden in New York City
  • MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ
  • Nassau Coliseum on Long Island, NY
  • Prudential Center in Newark, NJ
  • Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA
  • XL Center in Hartford, CT (formerly Hartford Civic Center)
  • Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, NY
Barclays Center

Then, after explaining that "Barclays Center will host over 200 events in its inaugural year, including world class concerts, professional boxing, college basketball, family oriented shows such as the circus, and will be the new home of the Brooklyn Nets," the survey asked how likely it will be that  "you personally will attend" specific events there.

Such events include concerts, college basketball, tennis, family shows, boxing, and Nets games.

Click a semi-positive answer, and you qualify to continue.

The survey asked how many events of various types you'd attend, including weekday/weekend basketball games. It asked if we know of the Barclays Center, and its general or exact location.

Getting there

Then it asked whether we'd given much thought to transportation options. What might we use?
Arrive by Car or Other Individual Motor Vehicle to Barclays Center...
  • Taxi/Livery/Car Service that you pay for by the ride
  • Limousine/Luxury Car that will be there for the duration of the event
  • Motorcycle or motorized scooter
  • Car (you or a friend/relative drive)
Arrive by Public Transit to Barclays Center...
  • Subway
  • Bus (specifically, a NYC MTA Bus)
  • Long Island Rail Road (to Atlantic Terminal)
Other ways of arriving at Barclays Center...
  • Bike (non-motorized)
  • Walking all the way (Don't count your walk to/from the subway)
  • Charter Bus
Any other method not listed above (Specify)

What would be the alternative option, we were then asked.

What are the most important factors in choosing a transportation option? We were asked to rank issues like cost, timeliness, safety, and convenience.

Public transit options

We were then asked about familiarity with bus, subway, and LIRR transportation options, with the option to see a map with bus lines and another one with subway lines.

Does such information, we were asked, make it more likely we'd use such public transit?

Parking

The survey seemed designed to deter people from driving. It stated:
Barclays Center is located at the intersections of Atlantic & Flatbush Avenues in Brooklyn.  
Drivers can pay to park at a number of existing garages in the vicinity of Barclays Center.
One new parking facility will be constructed 1-2 blocks east of the venue that will give priority to High Occupancy Vehicles (3+ people per vehicle) and VIP cars.
On-street parking is extremely limited in the area.
Click here if you would like to see a map of the area showing the subway lines and the arena.
But there are, as noted, other transportation options.

Potential plans

We were then asked our best guess about travel plans for a typical weekday Nets game: would we come from home, work, or somewhere else? What's the location? What mode would we use?

I answered subway, and was then asked what subway line I'd most likely be arriving on, and whether I'd be transferring to it.

I was also asked the chances I'd use a motor vehicle and, if so, what kind.

We were also asked at what time we'd arrive in the the general vicinity of the arena, perhaps to shop, eat, drink or hang out in the neighborhood:
  • 2 or more hours before starting time
  • 1 hour before starting time
  • At least 30 minutes before starting time
  • Close to starting time - less than 30 minutes before/after event starts
  • More than 30 minutes after starting time
We were then asked how soon we'd leave.

Transit nuances

After I responded that I'd leave by subway, I was asked:
  • How many minutes would you consider to be a surprisingly short wait - in other words, a quicker than expected wait? 
  • How many minutes would be so long to wait that you'd seriously consider taking another form of transportation if you knew you would have to wait that long? 
Incentives to drive?

We were asked if certain options increase the likelihood to drive instead of take public transit:
  • Closer and/or discounted parking for vehicles with 3+ passengers.
  • Availability of less expensive parking in a remote lot with a free shuttle bus to the arena.
  • Ability to pre-purchase a parking space online for a wide variety of parking locations to have a guaranteed space.
Summing up

As noted above, the survey seems designed to get people to use public transit, and to help advise transit agencies where service might be beefed up.

But there are still a lot of variables, including the desire for free neighborhood parking and the role of local garages.













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