8-27-2013

Contact: Gary Lewis, 614-688-2048

Ohio State kicks off its 2013 home football season Saturday vs. Buffalo

Ohio Stadium public safety message for the upcoming season

The Ohio State University will kick off a new season of Buckeye football hosting the Buffalo Bulls at noon Saturday, Aug. 31, in Ohio Stadium.

Nearly 1 million guests will visit Ohio State’s campus and Greater Columbus over the seven-game home schedule. As part of its focus on safety, Ohio State officials collaborate with local and state-affiliated agencies and the support of faculty, staff, students and volunteers to ensure that “Buckeye Game Days” are safe and family-friendly.

Highlights this year this season include, improving cell phone signal strength, traffic and parking detail, and continuing the university’s significant commitment to sustainability by once again aiming for “Zero Waste” in Ohio Stadium. This year, stadium guests will now have the opportunity to tweet a message and see it on the stadium ribbon boards. In addition, those in the stadium will now be able to see more replays and, at times, the same replays that television viewers see at home.

“The University’s Department of Public Safety works closely with the Athletics Department to help ensure fans enjoy the game in a safe and secure environment,” Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith, said.

Guests and visitors might also notice a significant transformation along the Olentangy River Corridor as efforts to restore the river to its natural flow and improve the water quality and ecosystem have progressed over the summer.

Each game day, we have hundreds of thousands of visitors within the area and our primary goal is to keep them safe,” Ohio State University Police Chief Paul Denton, said.

###

FACT SHEET

Athletics – All game day policies and procedures, a parking map and helpful information are located at http://www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com/gameday/
1. Ohio Stadium is home to nearly 103,000 fans and students receive more football tickets (30,000) than any other school in the nation. There are still tickets for sale.
a. To check for ticket availability, go to http://go.osu.edu/13FBTix. For the 2013 football season, individual game tickets will be $79 each (plus any applicable fees), with the exception of the premium game vs. Wisconsin; tickets for the Wisconsin game will be $110 each (plus any applicable fees). Tickets may be purchased in person at the Athletics Ticket Office, in person at any Ticketmaster outlet, by phone at 1-800-745-3000 and online at www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com/tickets.

b. As an alternative, season ticket holders who cannot attend a game may post them for re-sale on the Buckeyes Ticket Exchange, where the seller sets the asking price. The tickets are sent via e-mail to the purchaser’s e-mail address for printing at home upon completion of the transaction. Original tickets are not valid once they are sold. Click on or copy and paste the following link to access Buckeyes Ticket Exchange, the Official Resale Marketplace of Ohio State Athletics: http://www.ticketexchangebyticketmaster.com/ohio-state-tickets

2. Guests are encouraged to “Scarlet and Gray the Shoe” at the first game versus Buffalo on Saturday, Aug. 31. Please visit this link for more information: http://www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/081913aaa.html

Safety and Security – The University’s Department of Public Safety works closely with the Athletics Department to help ensure fans enjoy the game in a safe and secure environment.

* 1. Disability Parking – Disability parking is consolidated in the north lot of St. John Arena and in the Lane Avenue Parking Garage. All spaces are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

* a. A new traffic pattern for those driving to the disability lots will be implemented this year due to the North Residential District project and Curl Drive closure. Drivers should use Lane Avenue and go east from Olentangy or west from High Street to the parking lots. Officers are assigned to direct traffic and help get people into the lots.

* b. A valid Ohio State disability permit or State of Ohio disability placard with registration is required, and the individual to whom the placard is issued must be present in the vehicle. In an effort to ensure that there is adequate disability parking available for those who truly need it, officers will be checking disability placards at both locations. Anyone using a placard without having the registered owner in the car will be unable to park and subject to a citation.

* c. Shuttles from the disability-parking locations will provide continuous adapted transportation services beginning six hours before kickoff and continuing one hour after the game. Shuttles will drop off guests on the east side of the stadium at Gate 22.
* 2. Alcohol Enforcement - Law enforcement agencies enforce all applicable laws, including state laws regarding the use and possession of alcohol. Citations will be issued and arrests made for violation of laws prohibiting open containers of alcohol in public areas, including university parking lots and garages. Persons engaging in underage drinking, public indecency, disorderly conduct and other violations are subject to arrest.

* Complete policies on the State of Ohio open container law and The Ohio State University Alcohol Policies are available.

* 3. Grills - ONLY propane grills are permitted on surface parking lots. Grilling is not permitted on garage rooftops or inside parking garages, in accordance with state and local fire codes. Fire pits or open fires are not allowed and will be extinguished.
* 4. Tents - Fire officials will inspect tents and enforce the law that requires a permit for tents larger than 200 square feet. Cooking is not allowed inside or under a tent or awning.

* 5. Caution on Ticket Fraud - Only tickets purchased or received from the Athletics Ticket Office, Ticketmaster or the official Buckeyes Ticket Exchange website are guaranteed valid. Other purchases may be counterfeit, stolen or otherwise void, and will receive an invalid scan. Guests with an invalid ticket scan at the stadium gates will not gain entry into the stadium.

* 6. Event Security - Securing public events is a partnership and everyone’s responsibility. While law enforcement and other public safety officials will be vigilant we ask for your help. Most simply if you see something say something.

Improving cell phone coverage – Verizon Wireless has installed a new Wireless Distribution System (WDS) on The Ohio State University campus. The WDS delivers Verizon’s 4G LTE signal through a network of more than 1,300 small antennas strategically placed around the campus, including nearly 300 at the Ohio Stadium. These antennas grab the signal from an on-site base station and transmit it throughout the campus, providing stronger wireless reception at 4G LTE speeds. The system will undergo testing phases during the first few home games. Officials believe the increase in cell phone antennas throughout the campus will greatly improve coverage during game days.

Zero Waste Initiative at Ohio Stadium – The battle to become the largest stadium in the country to divert 90 percent of its trash from landfills through recycling and composting continues this season in Ohio Stadium. Zero Waste, part of a larger and progressive effort on campus to demonstrate Ohio State’s leadership in sustainability, replaced trash cans with recycling and compost bins last year to reduce landfill materials by 61 percent over the 2012 season.

CampusParc/Traffic & Parking – Current road and building construction projects will continue throughout the football season but will have little impact on the game day commute, according to Beth Kelley-Snoke, director of Transportation & Traffic Management.

One closure of note will be Curl Drive, which runs between Woodruff Avenue and Neil Avenue in the north campus district. Curl Drive will be permanently closed by Oct. 1 in support of the university’s North Residential District Transformation Project. To avoid changing traffic patterns mid-season, fans will no longer be directed to use Curl Drive to access disability parking in the lots north of St. John Arena and in the Lane Avenue Parking Garage.

Fans wishing to access disability parking will use Lane Avenue and follow officers’ directions into available parking in the north St. John Arena lots and the Lane Avenue Parking Garage. A valid Ohio State or state-issued disability placard must be displayed to access the disability parking areas. (The registration for the state-issued placard must be available upon request from the officers.) The cost for day-of-game parking is $15.

“Our campus is multi-modal and those coming to Ohio State for game day are reminded to follow all posted signs for their safety – whether walking, biking or driving. The best advice for fans is to arrive early, be patient, share the road with other modes of transportation, and follow the directions of our public safety and traffic officers,” Kelley-Snoke said.

All season and day-of-game parking locations will remain the same.

The West Campus and disability shuttles will continue to provide service, free of charge. COTA will also provide transportation from the state fairgrounds to campus.

Inside Ohio Stadium - Fans are encouraged to travel light and visit the Ohio State football game day website at www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com to review stadium policies.

Ohio Stadium has recycled trash for the past few years but this season will take its boldest step to establish itself as the largest facility in the world operating at Zero Waste..

Parents and guardians of young children are again encouraged to take advantage of the “Tag-a-Kid” identification wristbands that help reunite lost children with their parents. The brightly colored wristbands carry emergency contact information. The wristbands can be obtained from Ohio State University police officers, ushers, red coats and guest service booths located near Gates 13, 14 and 38.

Questions, comments or problems during a game can be delivered to stadium personnel via text messages – “Brutus [your message]” to 76274 (SMASH).

Tailgating - Tailgating at Buckeye football games is a long-standing tradition. Fan behavior before, during and after each game reflects on the university and the city. In accordance with university fire policy, ONLY propane grills are permitted on surface lots. Grilling is not permitted on garage rooftops or inside parking garages. Fire officials will inspect tents and those larger than 200 square feet require a permit.

Law enforcement agencies enforce all applicable laws, including state laws regarding the use and possession of alcohol.

About The Ohio State University

Founded in 1870, The Ohio State University is a world-class public research university and the leading comprehensive teaching and research institution in the state of Ohio. With more than 63,000 students (including 56,000 in Columbus), the Wexner Medical Center, 14 colleges, 80 centers, and 168 majors, the university offers its students tremendous breadth and depth of opportunity in the liberal arts, the sciences, and the professions.