WITH over 30,000 fans expected at the Winnipeg Blue Bombers' pre-season game at the new Investors Group Field, just getting to and from the facility on the University of Manitoba campus will take some planning.
Here are some ways to make to make it to the game.
For those intent on driving, 5,000 paid parking spots are available on campus, but only for those with pre-purchased seasonal passes ($210 apiece), says the Bombers' website at bluebombers.com.
Casual parking "may become available," but will be limited, according to the website. Those with passes have already been assigned entrance and exit points. Some 185 spots are available for those with disabled parking permits and a parking pass.
Several businesses are selling their parking spots and offering paid parking along Pembina Highway and Barnes Street, including Giant Tiger and Safeway on Pembina, and Manitoba Public Insurance on Barnes. Street. A "running back shuttle" will be going along Pembina 90 minutes before the game for those who choose to park there, and is free for those with game-day tickets.
Parking outside of those areas will not be as easy. Two restricted parking zones will be in effect on game days, one in University Heights and the other in Fort Richmond from the southern boundary of the University of Manitoba, Todd Smyth, manager of regulations and compliance with the Winnipeg Parking Authority said. Parking on those streets will be forbidden between noon and 10 p.m. Residents who live in the restricted areas can apply for a parking permit, but only one permit, tied to a licence plate, will be allowed per home.
"Most of the driveways there fit four or five cars," Smyth said, adding the permits were there in case a resident needed to park on the street, for example, if visitors were in the driveway.
Other neighbourhoods will be subject to their usual parking restrictions, according to the website.
Smyth said those driving should leave early, in order to find parking.
"Give yourself lots of time to get to the game, so you can work with traffic," he said.
For those planning on taking the bus, Winnipeg Transit will be offering the Blue Bomber Fan Fare service again, which starts two hours before the game and lets people ride any transitway bus for free if they show their game-day ticket, according to Alex Regiec, operations planner at Winnipeg Transit. He said Transit is expecting about 15 per cent of attendees to use buses, which amounts to about 5,000 people.
Transit riders can take the 161 bus, which starts at the Balmoral Terminal and makes its way downtown via the Transitway. Alternatively, routes 78 and 75 leave from Polo Park and Kildonan Place, respectively, and go to the stadium.
Park & Ride lines 1-5 will also be operating, and going straight to the stadium from the respective lots. Six new express routes will also be operating to and from suburban neighbourhoods including Garden City, East Kildonan, Transcona, Southdale/Island Lakes, St. James/River Heights, St. Vital and St. Norbert/Richmond West. More information about Park & Ride, as well as any other routes, can be found on the Winnipeg Transit website at winnipegtransit.com.
Regiec said he recommends those taking the buses not only leave early, but also plan ahead. He also asked people be patient with Transit.
"This is our first time at the new stadium. There could be traffic congestion. Just have a good time," he said.
Lastly, those cycling will have access to one of 400 monitored spots for bicycles, as well as unmonitored overflow bike racks around the stadium, according to the CFL club's website.
Join the conversation and tell us below in the comments, how will you get to the stadium?