Building a small city within small city: U.S. Open transforming University Place

UNIVERSITY PLACE, Wash.  -- Part of Pierce County is being transformed.

Crews are working around the clock to get University Place and Chambers Bay ready for the U.S. Open, which starts in 50 days.

"I think it’s amazing how they’re getting everything put up," said Sandra Yuckert, as she walked along the path next to the golf course Tuesday. "Hopefully there will be enough room for everybody."

U.S. Open Director Danny Sink describes the process as building a small city within a small city.

"There will be 235,000 people on a golf course where there’s typically 250 out (here) playing golf," said Sink.

That’s why the traffic plan will be so restrictive there during the week of the Open. No cars will be allowed on the two-lane Grandview Drive. Instead, nearly 300 shuttle buses will bring visitors into the area.

"It will be more congested in our entire region, not just in our city," said Jennifer Hales, public safety manager for University Place. "Our goal is to ensure that our residents are well taken care of."

Not all residents are happy about the disruption -- or new rules that ban them from selling parking spots on their property.

"It`s our property, and we should be able to do whatever we want with it," said Donna Malloy, a neighbor.

Organizers say it shouldn't be a problem because there will be no U.S. Open parking allowed anywhere in University Place. Fans are being directed to satellite parking at the Puyallup Fair and Fort Steilacoom Park to catch those shuttles.

For now, the small city continues to grow. New buildings, tents, and grandstands for one of the biggest sports events in the world.