Indio, La Quinta bump heads on Coachella Valley Music Festival traffic
The acclaimed Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival has become synonymous with traffic — especially after last year's debacle that had concertgoers stuck in their cars for several hours on valley roadways.
The cities of Indio and La Quinta on Wednesday unveiled a traffic plan for the festival running April 15-17 with the hope that motorists who stick to the plan will avoid traffic and help ease congestion during that busy weekend.“We want them to be knowledgeable. We don't want what happened last year with traffic issues to hurt our community or the communities that surrounds us,” said Jim Curtis, human services manager with the city of Indio.
The venue — the Empire Polo Club, 81-800 Avenue 50 in Indio — borders the city of La Quinta and impacts residents and travelers there as well, he said.
Curtis said the problems last year were due in part to new parking lots north of Avenue 50 that disturbed the traffic flow and a higher attendance on Friday because of the three-day- only ticket sales.
For the seventh time named the best non-touring music festival in North America, it is anticipated to attract close to 100,000 people to the area, said Indio officials, essentially doubling the size of the city for the one weekend.
The shuttling of approximately 15,000 guests into and out of the concert venue from various locations throughout the Coachella Valley is also expected to ease traffic.
Traffic hold-ups are expected on the following roadways:
Southbound Jefferson Street from I-10 to Avenue 52
Southbound Washington Street from I-10 to Avenue 52
Southbound Monroe Street from I-10 to Avenue 52
Highway 111 at Jefferson Street
Highway 111 at Monroe Street
Interstate-10 exit eastbound at Jefferson Street
I-10 exit eastbound at Monroe Street
The following streets will be closed during the concert and only open to residents with special passes:
Avenue 49 between Hjorth Street and Monroe Street
Avenue 50 between Madison Street and Jackson Street
Hjorth Street between Avenue 49 and Avenue 50
Madison Street between Avenue 49 and Avenue 50
To avoid traffic the following routes are suggested:
For north and south travel, use Washington Street, Jackson Street, Calhoun Street and Golf Center Parkway.
For east and west travel, use Fred Waring Drive, Miles Avenue, Avenue 52 and Avenue 48.
Pick up/drop off
Taxis will be located at Avenue 52 and Madison Street and Avenue 50 and Monroe Street.
Concertgoers who don't want to park or can't drive can be dropped off at Avenue 50 and Monroe Street.
Xochitl Peña covers Indio and Coachella for The Desert Sun. She can be reached at (760) 778-4647 or at firstname.lastname@example.org