If you weren't at Arrowhead for Friday's 49ers-Chiefs game you may not realize there was an apparent parking "disaster", according to a number of fans who reported complaints of the Chiefs parking situation on Twitter, Facebook and in our comments section.
I spoke with someone from the Chiefs and can confirm that they are aware of those complaints about the time it took to get into the stadium, they apologize for that and plan to review with their parking partner what went wrong.
I could see from my seat in the press box a long line of cars still trying to get into the stadium early on in the second quarter. At most games there is not a flood of cars still entering the stadium in the second quarter because people are, you know, inside the stadium.
It being a preseason game and rush hour traffic along the major highways like I-435 and I-70 was the reason some fans arrived late. Those are the fans that seem to be the most affected by the parking problems on Friday night.
"Worst experience at [A]rrowhead," AP Facebook reader Carl wrote. "Drive from [O]klahoma, got there at 6 and didn't get in my seat until halftime. In line for 2.5 hours."
Another AP Facebook reader, Kyle, writes: "I have been a season ticket holder my entire life and never have I seen anything as screwed as the parking at Arrowhead yesterday."
There were a lot of statements like that. Read on.
@DJCross202 wrote: "Ridiculous, we had to cancel our tailgate. Worst Chiefs parking experience in 20+ y[ears]."
Nick: "Been going to Arrowhead for years. Worst parking and security experience I've ever had. Was not pleased."
@rigoneri: "Was going to the Chiefs game... Had reserved parking and some great seats!! But after 1:30 in traffic couldn't get in the stadium... Sucks!"
It's still unclear exactly what happened as far as the specific parking procedures go, but I did speak with someone from the Chiefs about it. The person said the Chiefs are aware that it was not a good situation for many fans, and for that they want to apologize to Chiefs fans affected by it. The person also said the Chiefs and their parking partner will sit down to review their procedures.
Obviously something has to give, and soon. The next two key dates: August 29 (last preseason game vs. Green bay) and September 15 (home opener vs. Dallas).
The Chiefs home opener against Dallas is arguably the most popular game of the season.
I shared several of the complains above but @DavidLBallew did a great job of tweeting his frustrations from start to finish last night so I'll let him take it from here.
Might miss the entire first quarter sitting in traffic. Some things don't change @KCChiefs— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 16, 2013
Please mention this on air!!! "@cdotharrison: The starters are going to be out by the time I get in. The traffic just won't let us prosper."— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
The @KCChiefs need to do something about this traffic. Can't get to the game on time!!!!— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Now I remember why we thought about canceling our tickets. We can't even get to the game! I want a refund.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Nice to know @kcchiefs that I have to take time off work to get to Arrowhead on time. Been waiting in line for an hour.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Still sitting waiting to get to Arrowhead. @kcchiefs should I have to wait an hour and a half to get in the parking lot?— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Still not even close to getting in.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
This line suggests to me the @KCChiefs are still an inept franchise that treats its fans poorly. Just pathetic.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Finally reached my seat with 6:30 left in the 2nd quarter. The @KCChiefs really know how to treat season ticket holders.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Chiefs customer service admitted that they were understaffed in the parking lot with gates closed.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Chiefs customer service said this was their first game after hiring their own parking attendants rather than contracting it out to a vendor.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
Arrived near Arrowhead at about 6:25...in the lot at 8:00. Missed 3/4 of the first half. "@ArrowheadPride: Can anyone beat this?— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013
@bobfescoe It was 100% game traffic. Customer service admitted they were understaffed. We sat in game traffic for an hour and a half.— David Ballew (@DavidLBallew) August 17, 2013