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Feb 26, 2013 1:05 AM by Rebecca Taylor

Streetcar force changes to Club Crawl, other events Downtown

TUCSON - As construction on Tucson's modern streetcar moves along, it's effect on downtown events is raising some concern.

Club Crawl a musical mainstay for 20 years is having to tweak it's operation.

Club Crawl is held twice a year in April and October.

In the past streets like Congress were closed allowing patrons to roam around bar to bar, not any more.

Dan Gibson is the editor of Tucson Weekly and helps promote Club Crawl.

"The fact that we can't close the streets has changed things, it's changed things for the past two Club Crawls," says Gibson.

"Well we're re-thinking it entirely. It won't be Club Crawl as it stands, it will be a different collection of music events between the Rialto, Congress and Playground and other venues."

In years past the two Club Crawl events drew between 20 and 30 thousand people.

For bars and restaurants it's their busiest nights of the year.

Gibson hopes that trend continues, despite the instillation of the Sun Link streetcar.

"Closing streets is a big part of how alcohol is sold in those areas," says Gibson.

Shellie Ginn, project coordinator with Sun Link says it's all about safety.

"One of the issues we are addressing with special events are the construction zones. The city has a Special Event Coordinator assigned specifically to assist special events with their planning and ensuring their success," said Ginn in a statement.

While some Tucsonans welcome the streetcar and feel with time it could compliment Club Crawl.

"I think the street car will be beneficial for Arizona and Tucson and Southern Arizona but it will take a few years for it to show," said downtown patron Joseph Hickey

Downtown patrol Dave Black says, "a street car could be really a great way to brings students down, bring families down, I don't see how it could hurt."

Gibson is optimistic too.

"So I mean we'll still do something, it will still be a music related event. It won't be Club Crawl as people know if now," says Gibson, "with new restaurants opening, with new venues opening, there's just so much to do in that space."

Events like the Dia de Los Muertos parade could also be effected.

The city is working to accommodate all events.

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