Thursday, September 27, 2012

Gridlock Sam's warning: don't drive to Downtown Brooklyn this weekend (but they're still selling arena-related parking)

Traffic consultant Sam Schwartz, aka Gridlock Sam, warns in his weekend column/press release, Don’t even THINK of driving in Downtown Brooklyn this weekend! Downtown Brooklyn Streets to be Jam Packed with Barclays Center Jay-Z Concerts Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. Atlantic Antic Cuts Off Atlantic Ave. on Sunday.

That may be wise advise, but Schwartz also served as a consultant to the Barclays Center, which offers a link to pre-paid parking in and around Downtown Brooklyn, including along Atlantic Avenue, site of the Atlantic Antic.

And though the city Department of Transportation warns that Atlantic Avenue will be closed from 11 am through 6 pm Sunday, Schwartz warns that Atlantic Avenue "may not reopen fully until 7:30 p.m."

What does that mean for those buying remote parking along Atlantic Avenue, with arrival beginning at 6 pm and a shuttle bus along Atlantic supposed to begin at that hour? Unclear, but it seems likely there will be delays. The Barclays Parking web site does not warn potential purchasers of that possibility.

The press release
(New York, NY) – September 27, 2012 -- Gridlock Sam has declared a Gridlock Alert for Downtown Brooklyn along Flatbush Ave. from Tillary St. to Grand Army Plaza and along Atlantic Ave. from the BQE to Bedford Ave. The Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges along with the BQE will be affected. Avoid driving in the area from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Expect a post-Jay-Z-concert surge just after midnight all three nights.
The concerts, all scheduled for 8 p.m., will draw almost 20,000 people to Brooklyn’s busiest intersection, Flatbush Ave. and Atlantic Ave, at the height of Friday’s rush hour. On Sunday, the Atlantic Antic, one of the city’s biggest street fairs, will close Atlantic Ave. from the BQE to Flatbush Ave. starting 6 a.m. The street may not reopen fully until 7:30 p.m.
Gridlock Sam’s Best Bet for fans is transit. He said, “Flatbush and Atlantic Ave. is the easiest place, next to Penn Station, to get to by transit. Eleven subway lines: 2, 3, 4, 5, C, D, B, N, Q, R and G stop at the arena or are a 2 to 3 blocks walk. The LIRR stops at Atlantic Terminal, right across the street from the arena. Pre-concert there’s already plenty of service. Post-concerts and events, the MTA is adding subways to certain lines and doubling LIRR service from Atlantic Terminal to ensure efficient and convenient travel."

In related tech news, Barclays Center has partnered with Brooklyn-based Roadify, the leading multi-mode mass transit data platform, to provide a real-time, broadcast-ready feed of subway and LIRR transit conditions, service advisories and departure times to display screens throughout the arena. Download the free Roadify iPhone app at: http://bit.ly/roadify
It makes no mention of Schwartz's other gig working for the arena operator.

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