In an effort to reduce bridge traffic over the course of the upcoming holiday weekend, parking lots on either side of the Golden Gate Bridge will be closed to private vehicles starting Thursday and lasting through Sunday. Bridge officials say that the intended result of these closures is to prevent the frequent backups that occur when drivers line up for the very limited number of available parking spots.
Specifically, the southern Welcome Center parking and the northern Vista Point parking lot will be off limits on those days from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., although certain verhicles will be allowed in. "Those coming to the Golden Gate Bridge during peak visitation hours can enjoy the view from the Welcome Center and the Vista Point overlooks by taking a tour bus, corporate shuttle, taxi, or ride-sharing service such as Lyft or Uber," bridge officials tell us. "Tour buses will be allowed to park at both the Welcome Center lot and Vista Point. Taxis and rideshare vehicles will be allowed to pick-up and drop off passengers at the Welcome Center ONLY, but will not be allowed to enter Vista Point."
This is not the first time this traffic-mitigation approach has been tried. Just last March officials also closed off the same lots to private vehicles over the Easter weekend. Interestingly, that plan reportedly backfired as confused drivers hoping to find spots circled around and around. "It's confusing," one visitor told ABC 7 at the time. "It's, like, why? Just leave it alone!"
Those who absolutely just must drive their cars this weekend and who really want that epic Golden Gate view are encouraged to try one of the seven other lookout spots. As for everyone simply trying to cross the bridge to get some turkey? Hopefully officials have learned from Easter's debacle and things go a bit smoother this time around.