ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.,March 2, 2016 – Downtown St. Petersburg is open for business as the city welcomes three days of fast cars, world-class drivers and family fun on the waterfront during the 2016 Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg Friday, March 11 through Sunday, March 13.  As the inaugural event on this year’s 15-race IndyCar season, downtown St. Petersburg transforms into one of racing’s most beautiful road courses and offers spectacular trackside waterfront views for fans of all ages. The race will be broadcast on ABC beginning at 12:52 p.m March 13.

Everyone is welcome to visit St. Petersburg’s dining and retail district before, during, and after the race. Both the Tropicana Field shuttle and Looper Trolley feature extended hours all three days, to encourage exploring downtown St. Petersburg after a day on the race circuit.

This year’s race set-up will be constructed in fewer days than ever before. Finalization of the circuit will be Wednesday, March 9, putting construction setup at 31 days. While Beach Drive and Central Avenue will remain open during construction and throughout race weekend, motorists and pedestrians can expect race-related street closures and detours downtown from Pioneer Park to Albert Whitted Airport.

The following roads will be impacted leading up to and during race weekend:

Closed:
  • First St. S. from First Ave. S. to Fifth Ave. S.
  • First Ave. S. from First St. to Bayshore
  • Beach Dr. from Central Ave. to First Ave. S.
  • Bayshore Dr. SE from Central Ave. to Dali Blvd. (Fifth Ave. S.)

Limited access:

  • Second Ave. S. from First to Second Streets
  • Bayshore Dr. SE, from Second Ave. NE to Central Ave.
  • First St. S. from Fifth Ave. S. (Dali Blvd.) to Eighth Ave. S.
  • Sixth Ave. S. from First to Second Streets

Albert Whitted Park is also closed to pedestrian and bicycle traffic, reopening March 26. Following Sunday’s checkered flag, all roads and areas affected by the Grand Prix are expected to reopen by March 26, with some major roads open as early as March 17.

Airport Access - Albert Whitted Airport will be open during the weekend, with limited access via Sixth Ave. S. to USF-St. Petersburg, the Coast Guard station, and the Port of St. Petersburg. Access to Demens Landing will be restricted to Marina residents and Grand Prix ticket holders using the water taxi.

Parking Information - More than 25,000 parking spaces are available within approximately one mile of the race track for race fan parking, as well as resident and visitor parking.

  • Downtown Parking - Parking at Sundial (enter from Second St. between First and Second Aves. N.) or South Core (enter from First Ave. S. mid-block between First and Second Streets) will cost $5 on Friday and $15 on Saturday and Sunday. The Beach Drive parking lots, located off of Second Ave. NE to the east of Bayshore Dr., offer $5 parking Friday, March 11, and $10 parking Saturday and Sunday. The USF-St. Petersburg parking garage and selected lots offer the closest proximity to Gate 5 with parking available Saturday and Sunday in designated areas for $20 per vehicle. Private lots, garages and on-street parking will also be available. Motorists are encouraged to observe all posted parking regulations to avoid parking citations or vehicle relocation.
  • Disabled Parking – Free disabled on-street parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis; some spaces have time limits but most are available all day. Temporary disabled parking is available on Central Ave. between First and Second Streets for those holding valid Disabled Person Parking Permit placards. Parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional disabled parking is available in city garages, at Tropicana Field lots 1 and 2, and in the USFSP parking garage. Due to its proximity to Gate 5, the USFSP garage is recommended for those with limited mobility, while South Core is recommended for those entering Gate 1.
  • Trop Park-n-Ride Shuttle - Parking is available at Tropicana Field in Lots 1 and 2 for $10, where race fans can ride a free Grand Prix shuttle to the track. The free shuttle, which features extended hours again this year, will operate throughout race weekend, beginning March 11 from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Shuttle stops are located on the west side of 16th St., north of Fourth Ave. S. This is the same shuttle location as used for baseball. The free Tropicana Field shuttle includes dedicated wheelchair-accessible trolleys.
  • Take the Trolley - The Looper Downtown Trolley and Central Avenue Trolley offer rides throughout race weekend for just 50 cents per person (exact change required) in the downtown fare zone. The Looper Trolley runs Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to midnight and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Looper and Central Avenue Trolley are both wheelchair-accessible. Visit www.StPeteTrolley.com for more information and route maps.
  • Motorcycle Parking – Motorcycle parking can be found on Central Ave. between First and Second Streets and on First Street between First Ave N. and First Ave. S. on Saturday and Sunday. Spaces are first-come, first-served and will cost $5. Permanent parking for motorcycles, mopeds and bicycles is located on First Ave. N., between First and Second Streets, and on Second St. between Central Ave. and First Ave. S.
  • Use Pedal Power - In addition to the more than 75 permanent bicycle racks located throughout downtown, a large number of temporary bicycle racks are available outside Gate 1 and Gate 5.
  • Taxi – Taxi stands are located on Second St., between Second and Fourth Aves. S. and on Sixth Ave. S. between Second and Third Streets.

Safety - The City of St. Petersburg and the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg work hard to keep everyone safe.  Race fans are encouraged to report suspicious activity to the nearest law enforcement agency as part of the “See Something, Say Something” campaign. Also, security enhancements this year includes bag checks for all guests as well as magnetometers. All ticket holders should check with the Grand Prix website (www.gpstpete.com) to see what items are permitted inside the venue and what items are prohibited.

Additional Information - The Dali Museum and the Mahaffey Theater will be closed during Grand Prix weekend. With the exception of race weekend, free Dali Museum patron parking is available in the Beach Drive parking lot with complimentary transportation to and from the museum Monday, March 7 through Thursday, March 10. And then again on Monday, March 14 through Wednesday, March 16. Shuttles run from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. with stops approximately every 15 minutes. The Museum parking lot is expected to reopen Thursday, March 17. Patrons are invited to visit The Dali and the Mahaffey when they reopen on Monday, March 14.

For more on transportation, parking, maps or general event information, visit www.stpete.org/grandprix.

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