University talks parking plan in preps for Paul McCartney


MISSOULA, Mont. - In less than three weeks, Paul McCartney will play at the University of Montana's Washington-Grizzly Stadium.

The university sold over 24,000 tickets and it turns out there are only 4,000 parking spots on campus.

When NBC Montana visited the Adams Event Center on Thursday, it showed workers busy for an event less than three weeks away. Getting ready for a performer with Paul McCartney's star power isn't easy.

"Our biggest thing is getting will call ready, because we'll have about 7 to 8 thousand tickets that people will have to pick up on the day of the show so we're getting all of those tickets prepared and ready for pick up," said Adams Center Executive Director Brad Murphy.

That's not the only thing to worry about. Everyone has to get there somehow.

Officials say they have about 4,000 parking spaces on the campus but they're anticipating 25,000 people to show up for the concert but they've got a plan on parking arrangements.

"There will be shuttles around from the south campus area parking. Those shuttles will get you to the stadium, getting back will be a little more difficult because everybody's leaving the concert at once, so we also have a downtown shuttle," said Associate Athletic Director Chuck Maes.

Parking spaces on campus will cost anywhere from $10 to $15.

Maes told NBC Montana they want people to be aware of parking and they want them to show up early.

"We're asking people you know, come as early as you can, 5 o'clock," said Maes.

Despite the never ending days of planning and hard work, they're calling it one of the most monumental shows in the history of Montana, even larger than the past shows they've had like Smokey Robinson, Pearl Jam and The Rolling Stones.

"I mean this will be a lifetime experience if you don't get to see him now, you will probably never see him again," said Murphy.

They even have a webpage that launched on Thursday that you can check out on parking areas and information. You can click here to learn more.

In addition, if you don't already have a room, you'll be driving a bit. Hotels are sold out. When NBC Montana checked online, we found nothing open for concert night for Tuesday, August 5. The closest cities with vacancies are Hamilton and Deer Lodge.

NBC Montana talked with the general manager of the Holiday Inn in Missoula. He told us reservations started pouring in the day McCartney tickets went on sale.

"To add Paul McCartney to that resume, I think we're only going to get even bigger and better and that's moving forward so I think it helps all of us and I think if we bring in world class events, just like the marathon last weekend, we'll continue to get new customers to be able to see what Missoula is all about," said General Manager of the Holiday Inn Downtown Matthew Doucette.