Crosstown Showdown fans charged to park

From The Eagle

By Cassie Smith

Published: October 10, 2011

The Crosstown Showdown between the College Station Tigers and the Bryan Vikings has gotten so large fans are now having to pay to park at the game.

The tradition of more than 20 years between the neighboring schools at Kyle Field continued Friday with the new change.

Peter Lang, Texas A&M University transportation services executive director, said A&M started charging $5 to park around the stadium because of the size of the event and the expense of hosting it. The department is an auxiliary service, meaning it receives no state funds.

"This thing has gotten to the size now we're expending a large amount of resources," he said.

Free parking was still available within walking distance of Kyle Field, he said. Having the free parking elsewhere and a charge for parking closer encourages fans to ride together and reduces traffic, he said.

Each district pays to use Kyle Field for the game. Tickets cost $7 for adults and $3 for students if purchased in advance from either of the school districts. Tickets purchased online or at the gate were $10.

Chuck Glenewinkel, College Station school district communications director, said the university charges between $15,000 to $16,000 to use the field. But the district is able to recoup its costs in ticket sales, he said. Each district makes between $9,000 and $17,000, depending on how many fans attend.

"We couldn't do that if we played at one of our stadiums because they're not big enough," he said.