Organizers of the Cooper River Bridge Run and local officials are reviewing how things went on Saturday and are already considering changes for next year, including raising the limit on registrations above the current 40,000.
"We may expand on that," Bridge Run Race Director Julian Smith said. "We'll have a board meeting this summer and discuss increasing it."
He suggested an expansion could increase the number of regular-price registration to perhaps 42,500. That's in addition to 1,500 higher-priced registrations that are sold to raise money for charities.
The regular, $40 registrations were sold out this year, although not everyone who registered completed the race. There were 34,747 people who finished the 10 kilometer (6.2 mile) course from Mount Pleasant to downtown Charleston.
Smith said that for the 2012 bridge run, the "wave start" concept that was used this year -- starting runners in staggered groups of several thousand based upon ability -- will likely be expanded.
Instead of the dozen waves used this year, there could be 15 or 16, he said. The staggered starts are meant to keep slower runners from impeding faster ones.
"For next year, we definitely want to take the wave start to the next level and add a few more corrals," Smith said.
Lt. Chip Searson, who has managed traffic coordination for the race for the past six years for the Charleston Police Department, said there had been some concern that the wave start concept would delay the reopening of the Ravenel Bridge, but the bridge reopened to regular traffic only 10 minutes later than the previous year, he said.
"We start planning for the bridge run, with the committee, in December," Searson said. "We (the police) learn from everything we do, whether it's a run or something more serious."
As far as traffic control this year, he's still putting together his after-incident report.
"I've found that if you can at least keep people moving, even if it's not necessarily the way they want to go, you can keep them happy," Searson said. "I know some of the local folks probably have a problem with the traffic it creates, but the restaurants all had lines out the door."
"For the most part, I think it went very well," he said.
Restaurants also participated in a new "taste of the bridge run" event, and Smith said that event may be expanded upon as well in 2012, with more establishments participating.
Reach David Slade at 937-5552.