Los Angeles’ notorious traffic — deemed some of the worst in America — will get a whole lot worse this weekend, thanks to the Super Bowl.
SoFi Stadium seats a minimum 70,000 people, but that capacity is expandable up to 100,000 for big events like the Super Bowl LVI, set for Sunday, Feb. 13. No doubt Inglewood will be packed with out-of-town ticket holders and folks just looking to get a taste of the experience.
It’d be foolish to think traffic in and around Inglewood this weekend is altogether avoidable, unless you stay home. But here are some tips to make your Super Bowl experience as painless as possible. These will also work if you just need to get some place nearby-but-unrelated to the Super Bowl.
First: Leave your car at home. This way, you can avoid the headache of navigating several road closures near the stadium and the hassle of finding (and paying for) a parking spot.
Inglewood officials have urged those not attending the game to avoid the area altogether and have noted that permit-parking restrictions will be strictly enforced.
If you’re intent on driving yourself, here is a list of planned street restrictions in the area:
- Northbound lanes of Prairie from Century to Arbor Vitae Street will be closed from 1 a.m. Sunday to 2 a.m. Monday.
- Century Boulevard from Yukon to Airport Boulevard will have lane closures from 7 a.m. Sunday to 2 a.m. Monday.
- The curb lane of 98th Street from Bellanca Avenue to just east of Flying Food Group will be closed from 7 a.m. Sunday to 2 a.m. Monday.
- Kareem Court will be restricted from Manchester Avenue to Pincay Drive from 10 a.m. Sunday to 1 a.m. Monday.
- Lane closures will be in place on Manchester Avenue from Prairie to Crenshaw Boulevard from 4 p.m. Sunday to 2 a.m. Monday.
- Pincay Drive from Prairie Avenue to Kareem Court will be restricted all day Sunday until 2 a.m. Monday.
- Northbound lanes of Prairie Avenue from 106th Street to Century Boulevard will be restricted from 4 p.m. Sunday until 2 a.m. Monday.
Another option to consider: Taking a rideshare.
If you decide to take an Uber or Lyft to the Super Bowl, SoFi has dedicated pick up and drop off zones, which should make getting to the actual stadium slightly less confusing.
But you’ll still have to sit in traffic, and both Uber and SoFi Stadium warn would-be ridesharers to prepare for longer-than-normal wait times — and higher prices.
Uber will charge each rider an “additional event fee” for pick ups ($20) and drop offs ($10) anywhere near SoFi Stadium. That’s on top of surge pricing, an Uber representative said in an email.
“Fares from SoFi Stadium during the Super Bowl will be dependent on different factors,” Uber spokesperson Zahid Arab said.
Some of those factors are time, location and vehicle requested, Arab said.
“Surcharges are being proactively implemented to increase earning opportunities for drivers during the big game, which can help to ensure greater reliability for fans looking for rides,” he added. “These surcharges along with any surge pricing will be included in the upfront fare a rider sees in the Uber app before they request.”
A Lyft representative also said riders should expect longer wait times. The factors that rideshare uses to determine surge pricing are similar to Uber’s. Lyft also has a “save and wait” feature for those looking to spend less money, the Lyft representative said.
Arab, meanwhile, advised fans looking to avoid longer wait times and increased pricing to consider taking public transportation or a shuttle to the game.
Shuttling, NFL officials have said, may indeed be the easiest way to get to SoFi. And since the stadium opens four hours before the game’s 3:30 p.m. kickoff, there’s no reason not to head out early.
You must, however, have a Super Bowl ticket and a shuttle pass to ride. And, of course, don’t forget your face covering.
Here are a few shuttle options:
The Blue shuttle, operated by the NFL, has drop off locations closest to Los Angeles International Airport, at 111th Street and 98th Street.
The Purple shuttle has five locations near Inglewood operated by the city’s Park and Ride program. There are also Purple shuttle locations operated by LA Metro from Playa Vista and all along the 105 Freeway corridor to Lakewood, Downey and Norwalk. Gardena also has a special Sunday game day service through its city bus system.
Keep in mind: Tailgating is not allowed in any of the Blue or Purple shuttle parking lots.
All shuttle services require advanced reservations, so you’ll want to hop online and secure a ticket. The shuttle itself is only $10 for a round-trip ticket. But parking prices vary from $40 to $60. If you’re able to nab a parking spot at a shuttle location, be aware: Lots close at 11 p.m.
And be sure to take note of where your shuttle drops you off at SoFi:
- Blue shuttles drop off and pick up in Lot J next to Super Bowl Entry South 2.
- Purple shuttles drop off and pick up at the Purple Shuttle lot at SoFi.
Another option is Metro.
But, again, don’t rely on parking your car in a Metro lot and then jumping on a train or bus.
The $40 tickets are already sold out for the Hawthorne/Lennox park-and-ride, a major hub for the C Line (formerly the Green Line) that offers a free shuttle to SoFi every five to eight minutes on Sunday.
The Metro SoFi shuttle starts running at 10:45 a.m. and will continue for 1.5 hours after the big game.
Metro recommends finding a lot somewhere along the C line and then taking the rail to connects to Hawthorne/Lennox, where you can hop on the shuttle. Your options are:
- From 605 Freeway or points east (Inland Empire or Orange County), use Norwalk Station and exit at Imperial Highway.
- From 105 Freeway, use Crenshaw/I-105 Station and exit Crenshaw Boulevard.
- From 405 Freeway (West Valley/Westside/South OC), use Redondo Beach Station and exit at Inglewood or Rosecrans avenues.
And, finally, if you’re planning to take the Metro on Sunday, it’s a good idea to download the TAP App, where you can load your round-trip Metro fares before the game to avoid lines at the vending machines.
Another way to SoFi is from the Harbor Gateway Transit Center. Gardena’s GTrans public transportation system has a special $5 rate for parking at Harbor Gateway and offers service every 15 minutes starting at 9:30 a.m.
The municipal transportation system also operates additional buses if capacity warrants it before and after SoFi events, according to the GTrans website.
City News Service contributed to this report.
Source: Orange County Register