Traversing Santa Clara streets on game and event days can be daunting. With thousands of travelers taking to already congested avenues in an attempt to get to Levi’s Stadium, residents trying to get from one end of the City to the other find themselves in the midst of extended delays.
The evening before large events, the Santa Clara Police Department (SCPD) shuts down Tasman Drive between Great America Parkway and Calle Del Sol, with the stretch of road remaining closed to traffic up to two or three hours after an event has ended. Some side streets are also cut off to through traffic multiple hours before an event to avoid jamming neighborhoods with people wanting to park for free.
The SCPD recommends that residents needing to get to Santa Clara’s Northside on event days avoid Great America Parkway and Lafayette Street whenever possible. Places like the Mercado shopping center can be reached utilizing Lawrence Expressway, Bridgewood Way and Wildwood Avenue in Sunnyvale. Most commercial businesses on Great America Parkway also have nearby alternate locations for residents to access on event days.
According to SCPD Public Information Officer Lieutenant Dan Moreno, if residents must use Great America Parkway or Lafayette, their best bet is to plan their travel time to coincide with the game itself. “When the game has started, it’s the best time to travel,” he said, adding that traffic is at a minimum during the three hours between kickoff and the final whistle.
Moreno also suggests that employees of nearby businesses may also want to plan their travel during this time on weeknight events to avoid getting caught up in game day traffic. “Weekday games are tough,” he said, recommending that drivers should expect extended delays.
If travel before or after a stadium event is an absolute necessity, Lt. Moreno said Lafayette tends to have less traffic than Great America Parkway, but drivers should plan on exercising patience during peak travel times.
“Bring patience,” he said, “because you will be stuck in traffic … We put out traffic advisories so people can be forewarned.”
Traffic advisories are posted on the SCPD website and Facebook page, as well as placed on NextDoor prior to events. Visit santaclaraca.gov/government/departments/police-department for a complete list of recent advisories and the latest SCPD news.