HOUSTON (CBS Houston) There’s nothing like a visit to the Houston Zoo during Spring Break with mild temperatures and sunshine in the backdrop. According to zoo officials, there are plenty of activities for the young as well as the young at heart to take part in during Spring Break; simply bring walking shoes, great imaginations, a willingness to learn cool animal facts and an open mind in terms of traffic and parking.
According to zoo officials, operations are kept simple, yet safe during Spring Break. “The reason [zoo operations are kept simple] is that we draw heavy attendance during the period and the accompanying traffic congestion is bumper to bumper in the area,” stated Brian Hill of the Houston Zoo.
When it comes to traffic and zoo operations, Hill added that on Tuesday of this week, zoo officials saw more than 22,000 guests. “The City of Houston estimates that more than 350,000 people a day are in the downtown to Reliant Stadium corridor during the Spring Break period, ” added Hill.
“Last year under the leadership of the Mayor’s Office of Special Events (MOSE), The Texas Medical Center (TMC), Houston Police, Houston Parks and Recreation, METRO, the Houston Museum District Association (HMDA) and the Zoo all came together to coordinate a master traffic and parking plan for the period. The resulting plan, named Spring Break Houston by the City worked very well last year and if the past 5 days are any indication it’s keeping things moving again this year,” stated Hill.
“A traffic command center staffed by HPD and METRO police and with assistance from the Texas Medical Center is at the old golf course club house in Hermann Park. The command center has real time visuals on all the ‘traffic cams’ that TMC operates in the Medical Center and can respond quickly to traffic bottle necks and other issues to keep traffic moving.”
Patrons of the zoo can view their traffic and parking plan by clicking here. “We just ask that whether people are headed to HSLR, the Zoo or any of the other institutions in the HMDA that they familiarize themselves with the plan and make plans accordingly,” suggested Hill.
Hill and other Houston Zoo officials also suggest that zoo-goers and those visiting Hermann Park and the other HMDA institutions in the area, take METRORail.
“To encourage our guests to let METRO do the driving we offer a METRO discount,” Hill stated. Patrons can save $2 off an adult Zoo admission and $1 off a child’s admission when the METRO Q card or any METRO bus or METRORail ticket at the Zoo admission booth is presented. (There is one offer per person). Hill also added that the discount is effective year round, but Zoo guests are encouraged to take advantage of it during Spring Break.
Click here to learn more about the Houston Zoo as well as all of the fun activities that are offered there.