SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Crowded Gaslamp streets, traffic closures, people sleeping on the convention center sidewalks beg the question: has the convention outgrown San Diego?
Four-day passes for the event sold out within an hour, months in advance. Comic-Con officials are turning away fans who would like to pay hundreds of dollars to attend.
10News talked with badge holders who want Comic-Con to stay put.
“I think San Diego has made a lot of changes to make it stay, and honestly I don’t know how much bigger it can get,” said Haley Greenhalgh, a 20-year veteran of the event.
Chicago resident Michael Schopler agrees.
“It is very condensed, there are a lot of people in a short period, but this year they shut down Harbor Drive, which is fantastic in my opinion, which might not be good for the locals, but for people attending Comic-Con, it's much safer,” Schopler said.
City of San Diego officials took additional steps this year to make the area safer. Harbor Drive is closed during the busiest periods of the day. Traffic officers are in place at critical intersections. Anyone on the sidewalk outside the convention center must have a badge.
Here's what 130,000 people looks like at @Comic_Con outside the @SDConventionCtr. You're watching the first 24 hours of #SDCC18 in 30 seconds. #ComicCon #SanDiego @HiltonGaslamp pic.twitter.com/qOmdbYT0Ef
— City of San Diego (@CityofSanDiego) July 20, 2018
Paul Weber of San Marcos believes the changes have kept the crowds under control.
“I see that as a positive, it was super crowded last year, and it looks like it’s a little bit less,” said Weber.