By BROOKE WANSER
As early as Tuesday, signs warning of traffic delays due to crowds set to descend upon Franklin for the Pilgrimage Music and Cultural Festival this weekend were posted along Mack Hatcher Parkway and Franklin Road.
Franklin’s population is espected to swell by more than 25,000 people each day this weekend, and city officials have responded by shutting down the northbound lane of Franklin Road from First Avenue to Liberty Pike for pedestrian and bicycle use.
Beginning at 6 a.m. on Saturday through 11 p.m. on Sunday evening, drivers will only be able to access the southbound lane of Franklin Road from Harpeth Industrial Court to First Avenue. Only left turns will be allowed on Liberty Pike.
“We know many people will carpool and park in other locations and that will help alleviate traffic tie ups,” City Administrator Eric Stuckey said in a news release. “We ask anyone not attending the festival or the Farmers Market to avoid the area if they can.”
Those who want to park at Harlinsdale Park, the location of the festival, and have a paid parking pass, can access the park through Mack Hatcher Parkway and Franklin Road going southbound.
Parking also will be available in downtown Franklin at Ligon Field, near the old silo off First Avenue, the parking garages on Second Avenue and Fourth Avenue, and at Bicentennial Park on Second Avenue.
The Franklin Transit Authority will provide shuttle service during the festival for those who park at Liberty Elementary School. The shuttle will drop them off at the Factory, across the street from Harlinsdale Farm. Rides are $1 each way, and the shuttles will run from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. “It’s a bargain,” said Debbie Henry, the the executive director of the TMA Group which runs the transit authority, at a recent meeting.
Rideshare app Lyft is partnering with whisky distiller George Dickel to offer a special deal for the festival: Attendees who are 21 and older can enter the promotional code ‘DICKELPF’ in the Lyft app to redeem one ride from 8 a.m Saturday through 10:30 p.m. on Sunday. The first 750 users to enter the code will receive a $10 discount on their ride. The voucher is only available to those taking rides to or from the festival and a half-mile radius surrounding it.
Pilgrimage is also offering a discount code. Use ‘PILGRIMAGE17’ to receive 10 percent off to rides to or from the festival.
For those who want to schedule a ride in advance and save money, clicking the clock icon on the Lyft app next to the address destination allows you to set a time you want to be picked up while locking in the price.
Drop-off and pick up locations for Lyft are both located at Liberty Hall at the Factory.