With the Kyle Field expansion project resulting in a 28 percent increase in seating capacity, transportation planners not only wanted to improve traffic flow, but also improve the overall weekend experience for Texas A&M University football fans. Involvement from community organizations throughout Bryan/College Station played a key role in achieving that goal.
The Kyle Field Transportation Plan was commissioned by Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp. The plan provides pre- and postgame strategies for moving fans, including tailgaters, to and from the Texas A&M campus.
“A critical part of the project’s success was the involvement of community organizations,” said Chancellor Sharp. “We want to improve the overall gameday experience every year and were proud to partner with our community for their expertise.”
The free Destination Aggieland app is part of the Kyle Field Transportation Plan and features an “Around Town” section with information on local dining, entertainment and hotel options. According to Chair of the Bryan/College Station Chamber of Commerce Transportation Committee Tedi Ellison, the purpose of that section of the app was to provide a connection to our local businesses.
“‘Around town’ provides an opportunity for people to find restaurants and hotels before they get here. The app provides them with one destination to find everything they need before they leave their home,” said Ellison.
The community organizations also stressed the importance of encouraging people to spend time exploring Bryan/College Station instead of hurrying home.
“Yes, we want people to move as safely and efficiently as possible away from Kyle Field, but let’s provide them with the tools to find local businesses and stick around the area for awhile,” said Executive Director of the Bryan-College Station Convention and Visitors Bureau Shannon Overby. “We want them to have a positive experience while here and return for not only a football game but other events as well.”
One event was created with visiting fans in mind: Football Friday. This event is held in historic downtown Bryan the Friday night before home football games and features live music and other family-friendly activities.
“The LaSalle Hotel [located in downtown Bryan] is typically full for football weekends, so it seemed a natural fit to expand our First Friday into Football Fridays,” said Executive Director of the Downtown Bryan Association Sandy Farris. “We consider ourselves to be the community’s living room, and we’re eager to have the chance to show the community off for our visitors.”