Eden Park’s Real Big Test
This Saturday’s Tri-Nations clash at Eden Park is the final dress rehearsal for public transport -and the park and security- before the start of the Rugby World Cup 2011. Train details here
Auckland Transport Spokesman Wally Thomas says there are comprehensive plans in place for getting up to 60,000 people to and from each match.
For Eden Park matches this includes trains and special event buses being free with a match ticket, trains running every 5 to 7 minutes between Britomart and Kingsland, special event buses from around Auckland, managed taxi ranks, road closures and parking restrictions around the venue.
“The large crowds expected at the Bledisloe Cup give us the opportunity to trial large scale transport operations. What people will see in place for this Saturday’s match is what will be operating for each of the 11 Eden Park RWC 2011 matches.
“We need all Aucklanders to have a transport plan on match days, whether they’re going to the match or not. Everyone needs to think about how they can change their travel routines and be patient to help make the Tournament a success.”
A reminder that for the first time rugby fans and regular commuters will be segregated in terms of what entrances they can use.
Only the special rugbytrain services will be accessible from the usual Queen St entrance. Customers wishing to board regular scheduled train services will need to use the new eastern entrance at Takutai Square, underneath the big Westpac building (Gore St).
Anyone getting off the train at Britomart will be directed to the eastern end of the platforms to exit the station or transfer onto other regular or special train services.
Auckland Transport has issued these reminders:
- RWC 2011 is the largest event New Zealand has seen and Auckland’s transport system will come under increased pressure on match days, so it will have to operate differently
- For those going to the match the most important thing to do is travel early to beat the crowds. Those trying to catch the train late aren’t guaranteed to make kick off.
- The best advice for those not going to the match is to avoid travel around Eden Park and be aware public transport will be operating differently. Check maxx.co.nz to see how your journey is affected
- Trains, especially on the Western Line, will be affected and there will be temporary changes to Britomart entrances to manage crowds.
Veolia Transport Managing Director Graham Sibery lists these tips:
- Make a travel plan and plan to travel early,
- Check which entrance of Britomart you’ll need to use,
- See if a special direct train stopping at key southern line stations to Eden Park suits you or
- Leave town early on match day.
We’ve come a long way since the first dress rehearsals including the previous years’ Tri Nations first experiments with using trains to transport people to the games when fans coped with all the construction around them.
Morningside and Kingsland stations have changed in appearance and of course so has Eden Park.
Let’s look back: