Backbone Exterior Ops & Traffic Management at EDC - Behind the scenes with our Project Manager Amanda Jones and Project Coordinator Sophie Bokelman
From May 17th to 23rd, 2023, the heart of Las Vegas was transformed into a pulsating hub of music, lights, and euphoria as EDC took center stage at the iconic Motor Speedway. With Project Manager Amanda Jones & Project Coordinator Sophie Bokelman, we review Backbone's involvement in this glittering iteration of EDC.
EDC, short for Electric Daisy Carnival, is an electronic dance music festival our client Insomniac Events organizes. The annual flagship event, EDC Las Vegas, is North America's largest electronic dance music festival.
The 30th-anniversary edition of EDC Las Vegas bore witness to the metamorphosis of an ordinary motor speedway into a kaleidoscopic realm of music and revelry. During this three-day festival, there were performances by Afrojack, Tiësto, ZEDD, Yellow Claw, Marshmellow, Pretty Pink, and many others.
Backbone International was assigned different exterior & traffic-related responsibilities at EDC Las Vegas 2023. The pre-production phase started months before the event took place, and the onsite production period was approximately two weeks.
Backbone took on many responsibilities, including activating numerous parking lots, managing pedestrian and vehicular flow, controlling inbound & outbound traffic, and developing & deploying wayfinding signage for vehicles and pedestrians. This all occurred while working closely with a multitude of local authorities and agencies.
Backbone's role was the Backbone (no pun intended) in patron ingress and egress— both on foot or in vehicles.
Amanda Jones, Project Manager of Backbone International, reflects on the significance of this role: "My most significant challenge was understanding what gaps needed to be filled between local agencies, the promoter, and other contracted traffic and parking teams. Once I understood this, I was able to build a strong, efficient team that was equipped for the mass movement of patrons they were about to facilitate."
The canvas on which EDC Las Vegas unfurled is an expanse typically used as a racetrack. Transforming this blank canvas into a thriving festival site demanded an infrastructure of immense proportions. Backbone was pivotal in this transformation, erecting 20,000 feet of fencing, almost 4 miles, to demarcate the festival grounds. The team also ensured ample illumination in the parking lots, installing an astounding (240) light towers to guide pedestrians through the nocturnal landscape.
In addition to illuminating the exterior of the festival, Backbone was responsible for deploying around 12,500 feet of bike rack and 19,800 feet of fencing around the perimeter.
Reflecting on the journey, Amanda and Sophie recount poignant moments that define their EDC odyssey. For Sophie, the pinnacle was the sight of 175,000 jubilant attendees on a Monday morning, each encapsulating the collective euphoria that characterized the event.
Amanda, however, draws her fondest memory from a different facet of the production. Working on traffic control during the event, Amanda communicated with entities ranging from the command center to the Nevada Highway Patrol. "Having this responsibility kept me focused. There were times when I would pull hundreds of cars off of the Las Vegas freeway while the Command Center gave me turn-by-turn directions. We saved patrons hours of wait time by having eyes on all entries and exits. It was exhilarating —just like being in a video game!"
EDC Las Vegas is an unforgettable event. We, as Backbone, are proud to be part of this amazing production.
Event photography credits: EDC | Insomniac Events