Controlling access to exclusive areas and organizing the place with barricades is fundamental; learn how and why to manage crowds.

Planning a big event or structuring a place where a large number of people will pass requires a lot of knowledge. It is necessary, for example, to develop an operational plan, think about suppliers, hire employees for different jobs and establish marketing and sales strategies.

One of the main concerns of event, venue and program organizers that receive crowds is traffic control. Being careful with people traffic helps ensure the safety of everyone involved, both public and professionals, in addition to allowing everyone to have a good experience.

To create good traffic control, it is essential to provide a good physical structure, including items like barricade and fence, and to instruct the responsible team. Learn more about the importance of managing people traffic and know how to create good crowd control strategies.

What is crowd control?

Basically, the concept is about keeping everything about the event “under control” — managing the public in a specific way so it can be safe, organized and away from some dangerous types of equipment or activities.

Why is it important to manage crowd traffic?

Nowadays, there are several recommendations for organizing events and services that promote the transit of a large number of people. In general, large event facilities must agree with local codes and safety rules. These suggestions can help you develop a complete crowd control plan.

Managing the movement of people in an event or facility, especially when the number of people is very high, is essential to ensure several important factors to the event or business. Public safety, good working conditions for employees, good customer experience and the physical integrity of the place are some of them.

Also, it is important to remember that customer satisfaction and crowd safety can help your event or business to get good feedback and reviews, allowing you to achieve a good image with sponsors and suppliers. This is fundamental to improve your business even more for the next events.


Most of the tips for managing crowd traffic are a consensus between companies in the sector, consultants and public agencies. Check out the main recommendations:

Queue formation for high traffic areas

Rows are essential to keep organization even if your audience is composed of hundreds or thousands of people. They are fundamental in crowd hotspots, such as entry or exit points, food courts and restroom areas to ensure that everyone can enter or leave a certain location. So consider installing queues in these areas.

Do not forget to employ ropes, retractable belt systems and stanchion kits. These items will be necessary to eliminate crowdings, cordon off any prohibited space and direct foot traffic.

Facilitate crowd movement with barriers and signs

Such as the items to compose the queues, barriers, barricades, fences and signs are necessary to provide safety and security to customers and employees. To organize them, pay attention if the signs can be easily read and followed, if the barricades create useful divides or only disturb the traffic flow and if there are adequate directions to exits and bathrooms, for example.

Ushers, first-aid stations and security services

Having a good team is always essential. Ushers need to be close to traffic areas; staff will be important to give directions and answer questions, and trained security professionals will be able to attend to any conflict, like arguments and fights.

Create evacuation plans

Even though many of the events’ organizers avoid thinking about the unexpected, it is fundamental to be prepared for any problem, like weather emergencies or armed fights. It includes creating evacuation plans. 

To ensure the evacuation will be possible and as peaceful as possible, check if the exits are signalized and if they are easy to access. Emergency communication needs to be prepared with all staff and ushers. Finally, evacuation protocols and emergency procedures have to be checked with local police and fire departments.