VCU Police implement regional traffic plan for high school graduations; VCU parking subscribers receive temporary assignments

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An officer in a yellow vest directs traffic.
VCU Police expects heavy traffic in downtown Richmond during local high school graduation ceremonies at the Stuart C. Siegel Center beginning June 4. (File photo)

The Virginia Commonwealth University Police Department expects heavy traffic in downtown Richmond during local high school graduation ceremonies at the Stuart C. Siegel Center beginning June 4.

Twenty-five high schools from Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico counties, along with St. Gertrude High School and ECPI University, are hosting ceremonies June 4-15. An anticipated 400 to 7,000 attendees are expected at each event.

VCU Police has collaborated with VCU Parking and Transportation, the city of Richmond, the Richmond Police Department, Virginia State Police and the Virginia Department of Transportation to develop a plan to mitigate traffic impacts. GRTC has issued a service alert ahead of graduations.

“We’re actively working with our partners to secure the area around the Siegel Center to accommodate high volumes of pedestrian and vehicular traffic,” said VCU Police Capt. Jonathan Siok. “Safety is always at the forefront for us as thousands of guests are coming into the area and departing from our facilities.”

VCU Police and the Richmond Police Department will direct traffic at more than a dozen intersections, including those near Exit 76B (Belvidere Street) off Interstate 95 and along Belvidere and Broad streets west to Lombardy Street. As in previous years, digital signage in the area will encourage local drivers to take alternate routes during peak travel times.

No parking signs will be posted along West Marshall Street, between Bowe and North Harrison streets, behind the Siegel Center; towing enforcement will go into effect on June 4. This specific area will be reserved for buses to drop off graduates.

VCU Police is also working with the city to establish 15-minute parking zones on nearby streets to accommodate customers at local businesses.

Doors at the Siegel Center will open one hour prior to the start of each ceremony. Police advise graduating students, and their guests, to give themselves extra time for travel and parking. Pedestrians near the Siegel Center will have to use crosswalks, managed by police, as VCU will place safety fencing along Broad Street and side streets.

Due to the designation of travel lanes, drivers will not be permitted to drop off passengers in front of the Siegel Center. There will be a designated drop off for passengers and guests with mobility impairments on the eastbound side of the 1200 block of Broad Street. Signs will be in place to assist drivers with identifying this location.

Blue, red, green and yellow parking passes, issued by area schools, will be required for guests parking in assigned parking decks at VCU. Guests can view additional parking and arrival instructions at

VCU Parking and Transportation will be temporarily relocating VCU parking subscribers from the West Broad Street Deck between June 5 and 15.

For additional questions about traffic, parking and access, call the VCU Police non-emergency line at (804) 828-1196. LiveSafe users can also submit questions through the app. Police dispatchers monitor the non-emergency line and LiveSafe messages 24/7.


 2019 Siegel Center Graduation Schedule 

June 4 

St. Gertrude, 3 p.m.


June 5 

Thomas Dale (Chesterfield), 10 a.m.

Midlothian (Chesterfield), 2:30 p.m.

James River (Chesterfield), 7 pm..


June 6

Meadowbrook (Chesterfield), 10:00 a.m.

LC Bird (Chesterfield), 2:30 p.m.

Clover Hill (Chesterfield), 7 p.m.


June 7 

Cosby (Chesterfield), 10 a.m.

Manchester (Chesterfield), 2:30 p.m.

Monacan (Chesterfield), 7 p.m.


June 11

Deep Run (Henrico), 11 a.m.

Freeman (Henrico), 3 p.m.

Godwin (Henrico), 7 p.m.


June 12

Hermitage (Henrico), 11 a.m.

Tucker (Henrico), 3 p.m.


June 13

Varina (Henrico), 11 a.m.

Henrico (Henrico), 3 p.m.

Highland Springs (Henrico), 7 p.m.


June 14

ECPI, 1 p.m.

New Kent, 7 p.m.


June 15

Patrick Henry (Hanover), 8:30 a.m.

Atlee (Hanover) , Noon

Lee-Davis (Hanover), 3:30 p.m.

Hanover (Hanover), 7 p.m.