MINNNEAPOLIS - Top metro Atlanta public safety leaders are in Minneapolis, Minnesota, looking for key takeaways from Sunday’s Super Bowl 52.
Atlanta will host the big game next year.
Atlanta is no stranger to hosting big events, but Minneapolis police told Channel 2 investigative reporter Aaron Diamant that nothing compares to the Super Bowl, which is now like a 10-day event.
Diamant flew to Minneapolis to join Atlanta police and other officials who traveled to Minneapolis to see what they need to do to prepare for Super Bowl 53 to be held at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Minneapolis police gave Diamant an up-close tour of its now heavily-fortified perimeter around U.S. Bank Stadium.
“The amount of planning is just mind-boggling,” John Elder, with the Minneapolis Police Department, said. “It kind of makes you wonder if these are the same streets you’ve been driving up and down for years.”
As Diamant and Channel 2 photojournalist Jason Caldwell rolled up on military-staffed checkpoints, Elder summed up the two years of planning leading up to Super Bowl 52, saying, “It’s been exciting.”
- SUPER BOWL LII PREVIEW: Eagles, Patriots square off in Super Bowl
- Photos: How the Eagles got to Super Bowl LII
- Photos: How the Patriots got to Super Bowl LII
- Justin Timberlake will headline Super Bowl LII halftime show
“You get to a point where you’re so ready that you just want it to happen and be done,” Elder said, now that all the pieces of the security puzzle are in place.
Now is when the clock starts ticking for Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields, who is one of many metro Atlanta public safety leaders in Minneapolis looking for takeaways.
“It’s about getting all of the details and making sure that my team has the nose to the wheel and is just locked in for this next year,” Shields told Diamant.
Minneapolis’ multiagency command center, the Super Bowl security war room, is a good example of what Atlanta will see for next year’s big game.
Super Bowl Public Safety Coordinator Cmdr. Scott Gerlicher had some advice for Atlanta police:
“Be flexible. Things change. There are no absolutes in planning an event of this magnitude, or executing an event of this magnitude. Don’t underestimate the size and scope and complexity of this operation," he said.
© 2018 Cox Media Group.