Buses free for rugby matches

Free buses for Christchurch Super Rugby matches will continue despite some reports of overloading during the trial run.

The service will run for the Crusaders' match against the Stormers at AMI Stadium on April 14.

Spectators attending the first match at the new Addington stadium last month were encouraged to use free buses to avoid traffic congestion.

However, park-and-ride areas and some routes became overloaded.

Environment Canterbury (ECan) passenger services manager David Stenhouse said the free-bus system had "generally worked well" and most fans appreciated the chance to park and ride.

"We did have a few teething problems, but this was because we had no clear idea of how many people would use the park-and-ride system or which would be the most popular stops," he said.

"Now we have had the chance to analyse passenger numbers and understand where the bottlenecks could be, and we have more certainty about which are the popular stops." The usual services would be boosted by 39 chartered buses for the park-and-ride hubs.

"As with the last game, we are encouraging rugby-goers to leave . . . plenty of time to get to the game and to check timetables if they are travelling by our normal network service," Stenhouse said.

Park-and-ride facilities will be available at the Northwood Supa Centa, Merivale Mall, Eastgate Shopping Centre, Hornby Hub and The Palms.

The service is jointly funded by ECan, Christchurch City Council, VBase and the Stadium Trust.

The Press