CINCINNATI — Opening Day is upon us and while the unofficial Tri-State holiday is full of fun, traffic and parking can feel like a nightmare.
Here are a few tips the city of Cincinnati put together to help things flow smoother during game day.
The city recommends that fans coming to Great American Ball Park take advantage of the parking facilities located throughout the riverfront and downtown and walk to the ballpark.
There are dozens of parking facilities within walking distance of the park in downtown Cincinnati and The Banks. Click here to see the options.
Drivers are encouraged to use the following routes into downtown:
From I-75 southbound - use the Freeman Avenue exit to Mehring Way to the Riverfront
From I-75 northbound - use the Fifth Street exit in Cincinnati, then right onto Central Avenue to the Riverfront
From I-71 southbound - use the Reading Road exit to Eggleston Avenue to the Riverfront
From I-471/ Columbia Parkway - use the Third Street exit to the Riverfront
City officials are urging drivers to use alternate routes downtown to avoid congestion caused by the parade.
Streetcar service will start after the parade ends Thursday. Metro will maintain service but routes will be altered due to the parade. Access to downtown hotels within the parade route closures will be maintained, the City of Cincinnati said in a press release.
The parade doesn't start until noon on Thursday but road closures are already underway.
The following streets will close at 6:00 p.m. March 29 to accommodate the Reds Community Fund Block Party.
Freedom Way- closed between Rosa Parks Street and Joe Nuxhall Way
Marian Spencer Way- closed between Second Street and Ted Berry Way (local garage access maintained)
Joe Nuxhall Way- closed south of Second St (hotel and handicap drop off maintained from Mehring)
Additional road closures begin Thursday morning head of the parade.
The following streets in the Findlay Market area will close around 8:00 a.m. Thursday for parade staging:
Race Street – closed between Liberty Street and McMicken Street
Elm Street - closed between Liberty Street and McMicken Street
Findlay Street - closed between Central Parkway and Vine Street
Elder Street - closed between Central Parkway and Vine Street
Green Street - closed between Vine Street and Logan Street
Henry Street - closed between Race Street and Dunlap Street
Dunlap Street - closed between Findlay Street and McMicken Street
Logan Street - closed between Liberty Street and Findlay Street
The parade will start at the intersection of Race Street and Liberty Street, travel south on Race Street to Fifth Street, then travel east on Fifth Street to Sentinel Street.
Here are the closures along the parade route:
Liberty Street- closed between Vine Street and Central Parkway
Central Parkway- closed between Vine Street and Elm Street
Race Street - closed between Liberty Street and Fourth Street
Fifth Street - closed between Elm Street and Sentinel Street
Fifteenth Street - closed between Republic Street and Elm Street
Fourteenth Street - closed between Elm Street and Republic Street
Thirteenth Street- closed between Race Street and Vine Street
Twelfth Street - closed between Elm Street and Vine Street
Court Street – closed between Elm Street and Vine Street
Ninth Street – closed between Elm Street and Vine Street
The following parade route cross streets will be closed starting around 11:15 a.m.:
Eighth Street – closed between Elm Street and Vine Street
Seventh Street – closed between Elm Street and Vine Street
Sixth Street - closed between Elm Street and Vine Street
Vine Street – closed between Fourth Street and Sixth Street
Walnut Street – closed between Fourth Street and Sixth Street
Main Street - closed between Fourth Street and Sixth Street
Sycamore Street - closed between Fourth Street and Sixth Street
Broadway Street - closed between Fourth Street and Sixth Street
According to organizers, all parking within the closed areas will be restricted and drivers should pay special attention to any parking restrictions ahead of the parade to avoid being towed.
Following the conclusion of the parade, people will have plenty of time to enjoy the Reds Opening Day festivities ahead of the Opening Day game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. It starts at 4:10 p.m.
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