29/08/2017 - 12:04

Special transport measures for Perth Stadium

29/08/2017 - 12:04

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Special transport plans are being developed to handle expected crowds at Perth Stadium early next year, which will include an NRL double-header two weeks before the opening round of AFL games, and an Ed Sheeran concert that is now tipped to fill the venue. But the venue will not be able to host week-night AFL games before June 30.

Special transport measures for Perth Stadium
No weeknight AFL matches will be scheduled at the new Perth Stadium until after June 30. Photo: Attila Csaszar

Special transport plans are being developed to handle expected crowds at Perth Stadium early next year, which will include an NRL double-header two weeks before the opening round of AFL games, and an Ed Sheeran concert that is now tipped to fill the venue.

The venue will not be able to host week-night AFL games before June 30, however.

Perth Stadium chief executive Mike McKenna will provide an update on planning for the 60,000-seat venue at a Business News Success and Leadership breakfast on September 20. Click here to see more on the event.

The NRL will swoop into AFL heartland to stage an opening-round double header at the new Perth Stadium next season.

South Sydney and the Bulldogs will be the ‘home’ teams on March 10 in the first football games to be held there; their opponents have yet to be named as the draw has not been finalised for 2018. 

"This will be a spectacular way to help kick off the new NRL season - a Saturday double header at the brand new stadium in Perth," NRL chief executive Todd Greenberg said. 

The NRL has released tickets for the double header - even though the opposing teams won't be known until the draw is released later in the year - making it the first sporting contest to be booked for the soon-to-be-completed stadium. 

South Sydney chief executive Blake Solly said the club had already built a strong following in the west after hosting games in Perth since 2009. 

"We have over 1000 members based in Western Australia, which is absolutely fantastic," he said. 

The stadium will also host game two of the 2019 State of Origin rugby league series. 

Meanwhile, the state government has allowed an extra 15,000 tickets to go on sale for the first Ed Sheeran concert at Perth Stadium in March, but will need to implement a one-off transport plan as the pedestrian bridge isn’t expected to be completed in time.

Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the planned transport arrangements would be announced closer to the event, but it would likely include reallocating train carriages from other parts of the network, supplementing existing bus services to and from the stadium, and providing extra entertainment around the stadium precinct.

She said the state government had asked the AFL to not schedule any weeknight AFL matches – including Fridays – in WA before June 30 in the next season.

“The McGowan government has always hoped to be able to agree to the maximum 55,000-ticket capacity for this concert, despite the Swan River Pedestrian Bridge not being completed,” Ms Saffioti said.

“We will be allocating additional services where we can, but it should be noted that the best way to guarantee you arrive on time is to allow plenty of extra time, and prepare to wait a little longer to get home.”

Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray said by advising the AFL not to schedule any weeknight matches before June 30, the government was making sure the stadium could operate at full capacity for all local games.

“That way we make sure fans don’t miss out if the pedestrian bridge is not completed by the start of the football season,” he said.

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