Thousands of basketball fans will be in downtown Wichita this week for NCAA tournament activities. The sold-out games and street parties mean parking lots are going to fill up quickly.
There are about 30,000 public and private parking spots in downtown Wichita.
An interactive parking map shows where spots are available with real-time updates. Parking will cost about $10 to $20 depending on the location of the lot or garage. The garages at Old Town and WaterWalk are free.
Interim Wichita Transit Director Scott Wadle says expanded shuttle bus service will run on Thursday and Saturday for the games.
"They’ll be running from Lawrence-Dumont Stadium and also from what we’re referring to as the 'water lots'" across the street from the Mid-America All-Indian Center and the Wichita Art Museum, Wadle says.
The lots for the bus shuttles are free. Shuttles will pick up and drop off basketball fans continuously between the designated shuttle lots (Lawrence-Dumont, Water Street and Waco and 1st Street) and the Wichita Transit Center, which is located at 214 S. Topeka, just northwest of the arena. Shuttles will begin routes two hours prior to tip-off and will cease running one hour following the conclusion of the last game.
The free Q-Line trolley will have extended hours and routes. There’s also the BikeShare ICT bicycle program if you prefer to bike to your destination and avoid parking altogether.
Carpooling is highly encouraged.
Emporia Street near Bank Arena will be dedicated to drop-offs and pick-ups for hotel shuttles, rideshare vehicles and taxis.
Wadle says people who live or work downtown should consider alternative transportation options or plan ahead and add extra time to your commute.
"We’re going to have places for you, but it may not necessarily be in your regular parking location simply because of the demand," he says. "So I guess I would keep that in in mind and just be flexible. Maybe plan for a little bit more time than usual."
As you navigate through downtown Wichita, keep in mind that several streets will be closed for tournament-related events:
- St. Francis Street between William Street and Douglas Avenue
- Emporia Street between Waterman Street and English Street
- Commerce Street between Kellogg Avenue and E. Waterman Street
Follow Deborah Shaar on Twitter @deborahshaar.
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