Almost 200 cab medallions OK’d for Electric Daisy Carnival weekend

When thousands of Electric Daisy Carnival revelers arrive in Las Vegas in June, they should have plenty of taxicabs to get to the electronic music festival at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The Nevada Taxicab Authority on Tuesday voted unanimously to issue 12 special medallions — license plates allowing the operation of cabs — to each of the 16 taxi companies that operate in Clark County for the festival, the largest event of its kind in the world.

Not every cab company has the fleet or staffing to use all 12 medallions, but the largest operators will. If all the medallions were put in service, there would be 192 more cabs on the streets during the event.

More than 100,000 people are expected to attend each night of the event at the speedway, from dusk to dawn June 20-22.

Attendance is expected to be higher than in the three previous years it has been in Las Vegas because festival operators were given permission to sell 15,000 more tickets per night.

The event was sold out by early March.

The issuance of additional medallions was a foregone conclusion — it was just a matter of how many additional cabs regulators would allow.

Even the Industrial Technical Professional Employees Union, which routinely opposes most taxi allocation requests, suggested additional cabs for the weekend, recommending eight instead of the 12 approved.

Local companies advocate cab allocations to generate more revenue for themselves while cabdrivers oppose more because a larger pool of drivers splits the revenue pie among them.

The Electric Daisy Carnival generates unusual transportation patterns compared with other special events staged in Las Vegas.

It occurs over a 10-hour period and is about 16 miles from the center of the Strip. Most cab rides in the city are 10 miles or less.

Authority board members said they supported additional cab allocations because each vehicle that makes a run to the speedway is out of commission for at least 45 minutes and vehicles that make a run rarely have a passenger to pick up for the return.

The Taxicab Authority made special allocations in each of the three years the event has been in Las Vegas, but the 12 per company approved Tuesday was the largest number authorized.

Although carnival organizers expect many attendees to drive their own cars to the speedway, many millennials attending the event will carpool or take cabs as an alternative.

And the VIP class of Electric Daisy Carnival attendees will have another way to get in. Some arrive by helicopter.