Tuesday, March 6, 2012

We're ready for the Big 12 Tourney

As the Big 12 College Basketball Tournament is expected to bring tens of thousands of visitors to Downtown starting tomorrow, sports fans can rest assured your police department is making safety a top priority so you can have fun.

We successfully have managed this event for several years now, and there is a lot of behind-the-scenes planning to make sure it goes smoothly. First, you should know about street closures. The following streets closed today and yesterday and will remain so until the early morning hours of Sunday, March 11:

• Grand from 13th to 15th Street
• 14th Street from Main to Grand
• Walnut from 13th to 15th Street

Traffic officers will work to move traffic as smoothly as possible in these areas, but congestion is likely. Find an alternate route and give yourself extra time.

An additional 40 to 60 officers will be assigned Downtown during the tournament. You’ll see them on foot, horses, bicycles, and in cars.

Officers and detectives also will be patrolling parking areas all around Downtown and its outskirts to prevent thefts from vehicles. You can help prevent these thefts, as well, by not leaving anything of value in plain view in your vehicle (this includes GPS units, laptops, bags, cell phones, purses, cameras, and even loose change). Keep them at home, put them in your trunk before you leave home, or take them with you when you leave your vehicle.

Police also will be on the look-out for unlicensed ticket scalpers and underage drinking.

The Big 12 Tournament always is a fun event and great economic opportunity for Downtown Kansas City. We hope no one will need us during this time, but we’ll be more than ready if they do.

Send comments to kcpdchiefblog@kcpd.org.