Last Minute Preps to 2018 Festival Traffic

Last Minute Preps to 2018 Festival Traffic

Patrick Price

It’s officially one week from the start of weekend one of Coachella 2018 and already a lot of relief when it comes to traffic concerns that plagued the area from last years event.

This is the gateway into Coachella 2018, the completed jefferson street bridge at I-10.

“For the past three years has always been some form of construction,” said Dan Marshall with Indio Police Department.

Now it’s polished and ready for more than 100,000 music fanatics to barrel their way into town.

“They’re completely done up there so it’s going to really help get traffic in, get them down here to the venue and get them in,” said Marshall.

Along the way, restaurants like the new sonic which opened up at the end of 2017, will expect much busier weekends in April as the festival continues to grow and grow.

“From where we started to where it is now, no one would have ever predicted that,” he said.

It’s Marshalls 15th Coachella Festival since joining the Indio Police Department. Every year, plans change. Last year, they broke barriers welcoming in the largest crowd ever at over 120,000 people. That meant preparing for a traffic congestion nightmares.

“Closely connected to public safety. We need those roadways open and we want to provide as little inconvenience,” said Marshall.

This year, a temporary light on Avenue 50 near Monroe Street will allow pedestrians easier access to the venue space from parking lots.

“More parking, we’ve done some improvements there,” said Marshall.

Also, there’s a new way police are vetting campers that make their way onto festival grounds.

“Last year we were further inside the venue to alleviate some of the pressure on the street. This year we’re looking forward to starting that right at the gate,” he said.

Even minor changes like changing cone patterns and tapering off turning lanes will be something residents and visitors need to take note of.

And another reminder for drivers that construction on Highway 111 will be halted in downtown indio for the duration of several festival weekends. It’ll be a big relief for residents and visitors that will go from the 11th through the 30th of April.