For the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, a major selling point of the East Mountain location for a Pan Am Stadium is its proximity to the Red Hill Valley Parkway / Lincoln Alexander Parkway. The argument is that a highway-accessible stadium will be easier for fans from the greater Hamilton region to reach by car.
Unfortunately, does not seem likely that the RHVP/Linc actually has the capacity to accommodate all the automobile traffic that a game would generate, given that no reasonable alternatives exist to driving at that location.
If we assume attendance of 20,000 to a typical Ticat game and an average vehicle occupancy of 1.3 people per vehicle, a game will generate 16,667 vehicle trips.
Those vehicles can approach an East Mountain stadium from the north via the RHVP or from the west via the Linc. Both are divided, four-lane highways with two lanes in each direction.
If we keep it simple and assume the traffic will be split evenly among the two routes, that's 8,333 vehicles per route.
Here's where it gets troublesome: as I understand it, the maximum per-direction capacity on a four-lane, divided highway under optimal conditions is a little less than 3,500 vehicles per hour - and conditions on the RHVP are less than optimal, given the parkway's grade and curvature.
That means it would take well over two hours for traffic to make its way into the stadium, followed by the same duration to get back out. Even this assumes the parkways are exclusively dedicated to Ticat fans with no other traffic.
Since the location and design on the East Mountain preclude either alternative travel modes or local amenities in which to pass the time, that means a grueling congestion crunch both before and after every game for those fans dedicated enough to brave the gridlock.
So much for the "driveway-to-driveway experience".
The West Harbour location also suffers limited vehicle access, but has the significant compensating benefits of a diverse set of multi-modal options - walking, cycling, transit, GO Train, and driving - not to mention a lively downtown full of amenities in which to wait out the rush.
Note: I Am Not A Traffic Engineer (IANATE). If any traffic engineers are reading this and I've missed something obvious, please let me know in the comments.
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