#TransitThursday Play Ball! - What’s your favorite transit-friendly sports venue?
About two weeks ago @mamakoid @heyhauser41 @chrismillerwbt @cctgirl @martarider went to see a baseball game at Dodgers Stadium before boarding our #NerdTrain trip from LA to NOLA. Fun fact: it’s on @mamakoid @heyhauser41 @chrismillerwbt bucket list to visit all of the MLB ballparks. So what better way to visit the parks than by riding transit?!
Dodgers Stadium features stunning views of the LA hills full with mountains, palm trees. The scoreboard featured excellent production features to entertain the crowd. The crowd was super enthusiastic and seemed more ready to party than watch a baseball game; cheering, singing, doing the wave, bouncing beach balls. Even the game was exciting and could have been easily confused for a hockey game (i.e. it was the recent game with the brawl between the Arizona Diamondbacks and the LA Dodgers).
The one thing we all noted was how pedestrian and transit un-friendly the access to the stadium was. While Dodgers Stadium is one of the few places where you can enter the park at the level where you are seated (even for the upper deck seats), the pedestrian access is lacking.
To be fair, we did not take the LA METRO Dodgers Express Bus, but opted for the local bus at the bottom of the hill, because it had better connections to the bus near our hotel; only 4 other people boarded with us after the game. More people seemed to ride the Express Bus, but it still paled in comparison to the amount of people who drove to the stadium.
Dodgers stadium is surrounded by parking lots. In stereotypical LA style, the majority of those attending the game accessed the stadium by car. The stadium is surrounded by fields of parking lots, which may just seem more apparent by the typography, but even looking on google earth, one can get a picture for just how auto-centric this stadium is.
One thing I found interesting was the fact that people who drive Lexus cars received a significant discount on their parking and were allowed to park in the most VIP areas. Why in the world are they rewarding luxury driving? Why haven’t they embraced bicycle valet like the Nats?
The other thing we all noted was that there was not adequate sidewalk for entering the stadium from the neighborhood or streets nearby. A small, 5’ sidewalk corralled like cattle up the hill, sided by a jersey barrier. I felt like we, as pedestrians, were total afterthoughts; which seemed odd to me.
One would think that the various nature of sports events would inspire people to want to be active even in their spectating.
As we sat down in our seats, @CCTgirl leaned over to me to say, I can’t believe how unfriendly this place is for pedestrians!
I contrasted this event by telling her about some of the other stadiums that we’ve been to; both new and old. I was happy to recall just how many stadiums are pedestrian, bicycle and transit friendly.
There’s something about having the option to choose something OTHER THAN the car to access entertainment that just makes the entire experience even better.
When you ride transit, you get to continue to share your experience with those around you. You recall the good hits, the touchdowns, the plays, the moments; you continue the kinship of the crowd.
More and more sports venues are embracing transit, realizing that the crowd wants transportation options for accessing games. People don’t like sitting in traffic; they don’t want to pay an arm and a leg for parking; they want the ability to share their experience with other fans.
- The Minneapolis Twins Stadium is LEED certified and offers light rail, commuter rail, bicycle parking, and bus stops.
- The Washington Nationals Stadium offers bicycle valet service, BikeShare docking stations, DDOT Circulator bus service, METRO Rail service as well as METRO Bus service.
- Boston’s Fenway Park is a historic park that has always catered to the pedestrian and transit rider first. Yawkey way is a famous pedestrian-only area for congregating before and after the game. There you can watch Rem Dog give his pre-game preview, walk in from the Cask and Flaggan, check out some merchandise, greet the players as they arrive. It’s part of the total Fenway experience to ride the T and walk over to Yawkey Way.
As we begin summer, consider taking transit to your favorite sports venue. Share your experiences with us. Post pictures, talk about transit lines, tell us why you enjoy transit and alternative modes for accessing sports. JUST DON’T FORGET THE HASHTAG #TransitThursday or we can’t hear you!!
OH AND A HUGE THANK YOU TO @chrismillerwbt for today’s #TransitThursday Topic!!!
Photo Captions (Left to Right / Top to bottom):
- LOS ANGELES, CA - Dodger Stadium Vehicle “Ped” Entrance - LA Metro Dodgers Stadium Express Bus drops off near entrance; local bus 2/302 available 3/4 mile downhill from stadium (Photo by @heyhauser41)
- ST. LOUIS, MO - St. Louis Metro Light Rail Stop - light rail stop is located across the street from Busch Stadium entrance; bus options also available (Photo by @mamakoid)
- WASHINGTON, DC - Entrance to Nationals Stadium ~one block from 2 WMATA Metro Stops; bus options also available (Photo by @heyhauser41)
- MINNEAPOLIS, MN - Target Field Entrance (The METRO light rail stop is at the stadium); bus and commuter rail options also available (Photo by @mamakoid)
- BOSTON, MA - View from inside of MBTA “T” Green Line Vehicle - Green Line B, C or D branches stop at Kenmore; commuter rail and local bus service also available (Photo by @mamakoid)
- BOSTON, MA - @mamakoid & @heyhauser41 at Fenway after an awesome game day packed ride on the T! (Photo by @heyhauser41)
- CHICAGO, IL - Wrigley Field Entrance adjacent to CTA Addison Station - Red Line; Purple Line Express Rail and bus service also available(Photo by @heyhauser41)
- CHICAGO, IL - CTA Cubs Fare Media (Photo by @advantageburns)
- CHARLOTTE, NC - Time Warner Cable Entrance from LYNX Blue Line Light Rail CTC/Arena Station - basketball, hockey, and other events - LYNX Blue Line Light Rail Service to door of arena; CTC Transportation Center with various bus options across the street. (Photo by @jameswillamor)
- CHARLOTTE, NC - Panther Game Day view from LYNX Blue Line Light Rail Stonewall Station - LYNX Blue Line Light Rail Service four blocks to stadium; various bus options across the street (Photo by @jameswillamor)