San Luis Obispo city officials are taking several security precautions in advance of Saturday’s Women’s March, which is expected to draw up to 5,000 people downtown.
The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Mitchell Park, where the march will begin around 10:30 a.m., loop around the downtown area, and return to the park.
The city is providing portable toilets, medical support and a lost-child station at the Senior Center at 1445 Santa Rosa St. Additional officers from neighboring agencies will be assigned to patrol.
Streets will be closed along the march route beginning at 9 a.m. and will remain shut down until the marchers return to the park after about an hour, with the exception of Osos, Pismo, and Buchon streets surrounding Mitchell Park. Those three streets will be closed until about 3 p.m. Nipomo, Palm and Santa Rosa streets should be used as primary detours.
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The following streets will have no parking, tow-away zones from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m.:
▪ Higuera from Santa Rosa to Broad
▪ Marsh from Broad to Santa Rosa
▪ Garden, Morro and Chorro between Higuera and Marsh
▪ Osos from Monterey to Buchon
▪ Pismo between Santa Rosa and Osos
▪ Buchon between Santa Rosa and Osos
“Since the organizers originally requested a permit for 300 marchers, interest and participation has grown exponentially,” City Manager Katie Lichtig said in a statement. “With such a large number of participants, and because the march route goes through residential and commercial areas, there will be an unavoidable impact on neighbors, businesses and anyone planning to visit our downtown on Saturday.”
Lichtig added, “We’re working hard to minimize inconveniences, but above all else, we want to ensure that everyone is respected and safe when we look back after the event.”