Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
The great game-day deliberation continues
I can't be absolutely sure because I was only able to check every five minutes all afternoon, but I'm going to suggest that Winnipeg Transit finally posted updated transit information for Bomber game days at 4:40 p.m. Tuesday. I'll let you decide whether, based on previous commentary, that was "urgent" enough.
The information posted on its site is helpful, although I did find it a bit incomplete. And the presentation is very cumbersome.
For example, it did not contain information about the temporary diamond lanes (open buses and bicycles only) that will be established to help get buses into and out of the campus on game days. That information was contained in a great story by WFP reporter extraordinaire Bartley Kives. The diamond lanes will be in effect on Bishop Grandin and University Crescent. Why is that information important? Consider my dilemma.
My family has a number of transit options. We could jump on a 161-Investors Group Field express bus on the transitway near Confusion Corner that goes from Jubilee (end of transitway) to the U of M campus without making a stop. Winnipeg Transit will start running those buses every 15 minutes starting at 5:30 p.m. However, there are no diamond lanes on Pembina Highway, so it's quite likely this "express" route will be anything but.
A better option may be to take the Route 3 Super Express Bus from the St. Vital Arena (on St. Anne's Road just south of Bishop Grandin). This is appealing because there are supposed to be temporary diamond lanes on Bishop Grandin that should help funnel the express buses onto Pembina Highway and then University Crescent.
The small point here is that more complete information would help people figure out the best route to take.
The Investors Group Field website, which is really just an extension of the Bomber site, still contains no information about transit routes in and out of the campus. On the home page, there is a box to click for transit information. However, all that is contained there is a map showing parking options on campus. There appears to be a spot where transit information is supposed to go, but there is currently nothing there -- not even a link back to the Winnipeg Transit site.
I'm also a bit confused by the fact that all the express transit service begins at 5:30 p.m. Depending on which of the 10 express park and ride options you choose, it is easy to see how it would be 30 minutes or more before the buses would arrive at the Fort Garry campus. That puts the express buses right in the teeth of the busiest traffic on game day. Would it be beneficial to start some of the express routes at 5 p.m. for the real keeners? If you are riding express routes from Kildonan Place, McPhillips Street Station or Assiniboia Downs, a 5 p.m. departure might make sense.
Lastly, as a suggestion, wouldn't it make sense to create a space on the IGF site that allows bars and restaurants to advertise if they offer game-day parking and shuttle services to the game? Right now, it's hard to find that information.
A final decision on transit options has yet to be made at my house. I'm sure, like me, you can hardly wait to hear what route we choose.
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About Dan Lett
Dan Lett came to Winnipeg in 1986, less than a year out of journalism school.
Despite the fact that he’s originally from Toronto and has a fatal attraction to the Maple Leafs, Winnipeggers let him stay.
In the following years, he has worked at bureaus covering every level of government – from city hall to the national bureau in Ottawa.
He has had bricks thrown at him in riots following the 1995 Quebec referendum, wrote stories that helped in part to free three wrongly convicted men, met Fidel Castro, interviewed three Philippine presidents, crossed several borders in Africa illegally, chased Somali pirates in a Canadian warship and had several guns pointed at him.
In other words, he’s had every experience a journalist could even hope for. He has also been fortunate enough to be a two-time nominee for a National Newspaper Award, winning in 2003 for investigations.
Other awards include the B’Nai Brith National Human Rights Media Award and nominee for the Michener Award for Meritorious Public Service in Journalism.
Now firmly rooted in Winnipeg, Dan visits Toronto often but no longer pines to live there.
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