4 Tips to Avoid the (Queuing) Madness of March Madness

March 10, 2017Perry Kuklin

Don’t let madness reign at your sports venue during this March Madness season. Even at peak times when pathways and queues reach capacity and the energy of thousands of people intensifies, there are proven ways to keep traffic moving smoothly and your crowd relaxed and focused on the game.

While crowd control plans are likely well underway for this year’s March Madness, today we offer up a few reminders and tips to ensure your entrances, exits, pathways, and queues continue to operate smoothly for the next few weeks and for seasons to come.

Each and every effort you make to provide an efficient experience helps keep your customers happy and, possibly even more important, your venue safe.

1. Include Arrival And Departure Areas

When hundreds or thousands of attendees all arrive in a short period of time, you need to be ready for the influx well before they walk through the front doors. If arrival is slow or frustrating, the atmosphere of the entire venue can fill with tension and compromise the success of the event in a multitude of ways. Crowd management begins with directing vehicles for proper parking and then helping people navigate smoothly and efficiently from their vehicles all the way to their seats.

In parking areas, you can block off small or large areas as needed with specialized equipment, such as portable, extra-long retractable belts. These flexible barriers can allow one person to easily shift the flow of traffic quickly and efficiently. Additionally, these barrier solutions can be combined with signage to easily direct stadium visitors along their routes at any stage of their journey.

2. Say It Best With A Sign

Many crowd control issues can be well managed and even eliminated with clear wayfinding signage.

Directional and informational signage helps people to find what they are looking for, like concessions or restrooms, and to know exactly what to do. This clarity keeps bottlenecks to a minimum and satisfaction high as attendees can focus on the event rather than managing frustration.

Double-sided stand-alone signs can work double time by directing incoming traffic with one message and then be easily switched around to disperse or inform the outgoing crowd.

Combine solutions such as adding post-top signs to retractable belt stanchions to provide instructions along a defined pathway or queue. Or enhance wayfinding signs with digital signage controlled from a central dashboard, which is easily updated in an instant as needed.

To communicate effectively, try clear simple words with bold colors and universally recognized icons.

3. Reconfigure Quickly

At different times before, during, or after an event you may need to be able to quickly move equipment from one area to another. For example, blocking off the court at halftime or closing a restroom or escalator during an emergency or maintenance situation.

The solution: flexible, easy to reconfigure crowd control equipment. Post transporters, for example, allow for the mobility of stanchions so you can quickly create any configuration required for a particular situation. Additionally, immediate reconfigurations are possible such as when traffic flips from incoming to departing.

4. Balance Strength and Flexibility

There is a certain sense of power and strength crowd control solutions need to convey. The crowd needs to understand the flow, including areas that are closed or off limits. To send a clear message, the equipment needs to be sturdy and stable. In contrast, the same equipment needs to be able to also accommodate a quickly changing flow or influx of traffic.

With portable solutions like stanchions and their transport carts, you can conveniently store, rapidly deploy and quickly assemble entire crowd control systems. Additionally, removable semi-permanent post-mounting options such as magnetic bases for retractable belt posts, allow you to quickly and easily remove posts from floor plates as needed.

Crowd control experts at Lavi are here to help you plan and execute the most effective crowd management strategies for your unique venue and events. With good planning today you can give your attendees the best game experience possible, during March Madness and all season long.

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