What to know for Friday’s Beyonce concert

AP file photo

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — As Beyonce is preparing her dance moves for the Formation World Tour, Tampa Police officers are preparing as well.

Pedestrian safety outside of Raymond James Stadium is one of the Tampa Police Department’s predominant concerns. When Taylor Swift was in town last October, police had a big issue with people trying to dart across busy portions of Dale Mabry Highway to get into the stadium.

“When you have a big concert like that, people don’t want to walk all the way to the crosswalk. It can be dangerous. There are a lot of cars, a lot of people might be darting around in traffic,” Tampa Police Department spokesperson Stephen Hegarty said.

Ahead of this week’s event, Tampa police released the following set of guidelines for fans:

  • All drop offs (this includes personal drop offs, Uber, Lyft and cabs) are at the mass transit drop location, which is located on the north side of the stadium off North Dale Mabry Highway next to the pedestrian bridge. Any other location on Dale Mabry is not a drop off and pick up location.
  • Parking costs $25. Parking lots open at 4:30 p.m. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.
  • Limos must stage on Himes Avenue.  They must enter the staging area at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Himes Avenue intersection. For pickups, they must be in place by 9 p.m.
  • Pickups after the concert will be at Steinbrenner Field. Guests leaving the concert should use the pedestrian bridge to cross Dale Mabry Highway to the Steinbrenner Field parking lot. Drivers picking up concert goers must use the Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard entrance to wait for their passengers. Drivers will park in the parking lot, wait for their passengers and will exit onto Dale Mabry Highway. To avoid significant delays and to ensure the p/u is in place before the concert ends, please arrive between 9:15 p.m. and no later than 10:15 p.m. Anyone arriving to the p/u location at Steinbrenner Field after 10:15 p.m. may be significantly delayed in traffic and subsequently will not arrive in time to meet their party. For everyone’s safety, there is no p/u and drop off permitted on roadway shoulders.
  • In addition, there are scammers trying to sell fake tickets. While we encourage sales from authorized dealers only, those who take the risk of buying from private sellers use caution. Meet at a police department or public place where there are surveillance cameras. Take a photo of the ticket seller’s ID. Take a photo of the tag on their car.
  • Members of the “BeyHive” can bring along signs proclaiming their love for the pop star, but must leave selfie sticks, GoPros, video cameras, drones and at home. Large bags such as backpacks and duffel are also not permitted.
  • Other items not permitted: Lasers, umbrellas, outside food/beverage, radio scanners, strollers, artificial noisemakers, recreational balls and equipment of any type, strobe lights
  • Mobile tickets are permitted, however it is encouraged to save your ticket as an image or PDF in the event your mobile device signal is lost. It is also encouraged to print out tickets to avoid any electronic issues

Along with rumored Beyonce sightings around Davis Islands, there was chatter some Tampa police officers were boycotting the concert because of so-called anti-police rhetoric in the singer’s song “Formation.” However, the Tampa Police Department assures News Channel 8 the concert will be fully staffed with security.

“The PBA and our chief made it very clear that we were going to staff the concert as we would any other event. If an officer felt like they didn’t want to work the event, it’s a voluntary thing, they didn’t have to work that event,” Hegarty said.

The concert is this Friday at Raymond James Stadium. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.

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