Graduations at Siegel Center bring traffic woes

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -- Starting today and lasting for the next few weeks, you can expect to see more traffic in and around the Siegel Center for high school graduations.

For some businesses, this means more business. But for others, it's a hit that could affect their bottom line.

"It becomes hectic and exciting too," says Bernice Stafford Turner. It's really exciting for Bernice -- the self proclaimed "Flower Lady."

She sets up shop every year outside the doors of the Siegel Center, with her flowers packed and ready to go.

"I'm looking forward to at least making some money," says Bernice. But even she faces a little challenge.

"Once the crowd comes out, it's like a stampede. It's like everybody comes out at the same time so people don't know you're really there," she adds.

So that's when the flower lady get's creative. "I have a ladder that I stand up on so I can see the crowd."

So while things are mostly rosy for her, other businesses here along West Broad are worried about their bottom line. With so many people there, a lot of regulars stay away and that could mean less cash.

This year, police officers will once again be directing traffic and controlling the lights in and around the Siegel Center. The plan was updated to help traffic flow more smoothly.

But be aware, there are usually several graduations each day, morning and afternoon. And at times -- West Broad Street will be closed between Lombardy and Belvidere. At other times -- some lanes along broad will be closed.

The best advice is if you don't have to be near the Siegel Center, then you should avoid the area completely.

See the full graduation schedule below.  Broad St. may be closed from time to time between Belvidere & Lombardy.

June 7
St. Gertrude                                             3:00pm

June 8
Thomas Dale  (Chesterfield)              10:00am
Clover Hill  (Chesterfield)                  2:30pm
Monacan (Chesterfield)                      7:00pm

June 9
Manchester  (Chesterfield)                10:00am
Cosby  (Chesterfield)                              2:30pm
Matoaca  (Chesterfield)                         7:00pm

June 10
Meadowbrook  (Chesterfield)           10:00am
LC Bird  (Chesterfield)                             2:30pm
Midlothian  (Chesterfield)                     7:00pm

June 11
New Kent                                                     8:30am
James River  (Chesterfield)                 12:30pm
Community  (Chesterfield)                    4:30pm

June 14
JR Tucker  (Henrico)                              11:00am
Hermitage  (Henrico)                               3:00pm
Deep Run  (Henrico)                                 7:00pm

June 15
Henrico  (Henrico)                                 11:00am
Freeman  (Henrico)                                 3:00pm
Godwin (Henrico)                                     7:00pm

June 16
Highland Springs(Henrico)                11:00am
Varina  (Henrico)                                     3:00pm

June 17
ECPI                                                               5:30pm

June 18
Patrick Henry  (Hanover)                      8:30am
Atlee(Hanover)                                       12:00pm
Lee Davis  (Hanover)                              3:30pm
Hanover  (Hanover)                               7:00pm

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