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Police: Regional Transit’s ‘First Timers’ Helping Arena Traffic

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SACRAMENTO -- If the "traffic nightmare" predicted by some around the new Golden 1 Center in downtown Sacramento was to only be a fear and not a reality, it was going to take a group effort, and so far, it has.

According to Sacramento Police Captain Norm Leong, who works on the Regional Transit beat, about 7 percent of people going to the new arena are taking light rail, many of whom are riding the public transportation for the first time.

"I've been riding with them to the events and many of these people have never ridden light rail before. Many all still learning how to purchase a ticket," Leong said.

The city made a massive push for the use of public transport as a way to ease congestion around the new arena on event night.

The event ridership of 7 percent represents about 1,500 people depending on the amount of people attending any given event that is near or just under capacity.

Monday will provide another test for RT as the Kings will play its first game at the new arena as it hosts Maccabi Haifa from Israel.