CINCINNATI (FOX19) - The first installment of BLINK featured 27 art installations across 20 city blocks and, according to official estimates, drew more than a million visitors to Downtown Cincinnati.
This year’s festival will have 96 installations over 30 city blocks, and the crowds should be larger as well.
Think of a sold-out Bengals game, then spread it across four days and the entire urban core and multiply it by twenty.
The question for Cincinnati Police, then, is how to ensure the festival is safe and secure.
“There will be plenty of police officers,” Lt. Steve Saunders told FOX19 NOW. “Both those you see and those you don’t see.”
Saunders also described an emergency operations center CPD will use to coordinate security efforts.
“We’ll have officers looking at our surveillance cameras in the downtown area,” he said. “We’ll be paying attention to what’s going on.”
Another critical task for the police is directing traffic.
Much of downtown’s street grid will be closed to through-traffic during festival hours, 7-11 p.m. However some major cross-streets, as well as Vine Street, will be open with police assistance.
Drivers should still expect delays at crossings due to the number of pedestrians walking the route.
Slow, careful driving is advised.