AP NEWS

FAU has traffic plan ready for big Argentina-Colombia soccer match

July 13, 2016 GMT

Florida Atlantic University will host soccer match between the Argentina and Colombia national teams at 7 p.m., Thursday, July 21 as a warm-up for the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, the school announced Tuesday.

It will be the third men’s national soccer match hosted at the university since the stadium opened in 2011.

“We are actively communicating with international soccer promoters to see if there are games or practice times needed that work with our calendar,” Athletic Director Patrick Chun said in a statement. “Based on that an agreement was made.”

The match is expected to draw a large crowd to FAU Stadium. To alleviate any anticipated traffic issues, the Boca Raton campus will close at 4 p.m. Classes that begin at or before 4 p.m. will continue as scheduled.

Without giving any specifics on the cost of event or anticipated revenue, Chun only said the event “is an opportunity for us to create revenue on the rental, parking and concession sides.”

The stadium hosted a friendly match between Germany and Ecuador

In a soccer match between the United States and Honduras hosted at the stadium in 2014,game traffic mixed with thousands of students commuting to and from classes causing massive congestion. Many fans reached the stadium late or not at all.

The school took some significant steps to avoid those problemswhen FAU hosted Miami in a September 2015 football game.

For that contest, there were some normal delays around the stadium leading up to kickoff, but there was no replay of the massive congestion. The game drew a capacity crowd of 29,495, marking the first sellout in the stadium’s four-year history.

School officials worked with city officials and law enforcement for months to devise a plan that would avoid tie-ups and get ticket holders to their seats on time for the game.

To prevent significant traffic delays in the upcoming game, the school will direct traffic to the nearest campus exit to help reduce cross-traffic flow.

The national teams of Argentina and Haiti will play in another match at 5 p.m., Sunday, July 24 in the FAU Stadium. This match is not expected to affect university operations, but visitors to the Boca Raton campus should expect heavier than usual traffic.

FAU Stadium could also be alanding spot for the Miami Dolphins’ Sept. 1 pre-season finaleif the $500 renovations to the Dolphins’ stadium are not completed in time.