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TravelSmart Special Events Planning Resource Kit

08 - Case Studies - Part 3

Commonwealth Games 2002, Manchester

The Situation

The 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games was the largest ever multi-disciplinary sporting event in the UK, and a major focus of the Queen's Golden Jubilee celebrations. The event cost in the region of 135m in new sports facilities, with competitors from 72 countries competing at a total of 15 competition venues across the city. It was estimated that over 1 million spectators attended the event, which had a global TV audience of over 1 billion viewers.

Due to the dispersed nature of the venues, the ease of access by public transport to individual sites was variable. However, there was a target to achieve a 50:50 split between private and public modes, and whilst not as ambitious as the Sydney Olympic Games (90% non-car trip target), there was a considerable effort to promote sustainable alternatives.

The Solution

A multi-agency approach was taken, with a Transport Steering Group spearheading the task of co-ordinating parking strategies, public transport, stadium shuttle services, rail services, traffic management and communications.

To encourage people not to drive to the venues, 7,000 park and ride spaces were identified around the city, with a "City Link" walk route being created from the city centre, and improved access at rail and bus stations. Improved pedestrian and vehicle signage was installed, accompanied by various highways works and signal installation to aid traffic management. A further 9,000 park and walk spaces were identified approximately one mile from the main stadium.

Whilst a fleet of 95 buses ran dedicated services for the athletes, their families and officials, a temporary bus station was constructed at the SportCity site, with dedicated frequent free bus services being introduced to and from the city centre.

The organisers also adopted a comprehensive communication strategy to disseminate transport information, which included a major marketing campaign, a web site, a Games radio station, and dedicated pages in the local newspaper giving details of the transport options. There was also a comprehensive cycle strategy, with the installation of temporary cycle racks at each of the main event venues.

The Results

Ticket sales for the games went fantastically well, with faster sales even than Sydney. The resulting effect on the use of public transport and the park and ride sites was an estimated 20:80 private/public transport modal split, far in excess of the original goal. This equated to over a million trips made by public transport, and an estimated 200,000 fewer car journeys.

On an average day, there were 7,500 cars in the park and ride sites, 45,000 people using the shuttle and bus services, 2500 coach passengers and very few people parking in the identified park and walk zones.

The total cost of the transport measures were just over 4m, with public transport accounting for nearly 2m, and traffic management measures just over 1.5m. TravelSmart Special Event Resource Kit

Champions League Final 2002, Manchester

The Situation

The UEFA Champions League is the premier football (soccer) tournament in Europe, with the final rotating between different venues each year. The 2002 Final was held at Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United Football Club (MUFC). Whilst the stadium itself has already adopted a comprehensive set of measures to cater for normal domestic matchday traffic, the number of visiting fans is usually limited to a few thousand tickets, even for the qualifying rounds of the Champions League.

Whilst Manchester United did reach the quarter final stage, and were the only English team to reach that stage, a transportation plan was required to satisfy the large number of anticipated visiting fans attending the final from Spain and/or Italy. The minimum scenario was an anticipated 18,900 visiting fans, whilst if the final were contested between two Spanish/Italian teams, up to 37,800 fans and a further 13,600 media, officials, sponsors and VIPs were expected to attend. The total matchday attendance was predicted to be over 59,200 people, excluding officials and support staff. Due to the distances involved, it was anticipated that the majority of fans would arrive by plane.

The Solution

The organisers of the final established a transport plan to model the different options, involving Manchester Airport, the Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive, Manchester City Council, and officials from Manchester United and UEFA.

A number of different scenarios were modelled to predict the anticipated number of visitors, in order to determine the likely impacts at Manchester Airport, and the movement of fans between the airport, Manchester city centre and the stadium, and the implications for public transport requirements. Whilst the arrival of fans was expected to be concentrated into a period of 24 hours before the match, the majority of departures were expected to occur within several hours of the match ending. Therefore, the operation after the match was in many ways the more crucial part of the operation, particularly due to the need to minimise delays to outbound aircraft air traffic control slot times.

With co-operation between the airport authorities and public transport operators, it was determined that up to 5,000 fans an hour would be processed through the arrivals hall, and that three extended coach parks would be required, with capacity for up to 320 vehicles. Although the majority of fans were expected to have arranged their visits with tour operators, consideration was also given to providing increased rail services and bus shuttle services to the city centre.

Additional services were also laid on between the city centre and Old Trafford, as well as a dedicated walking route, to be sign posted according to the nationality of the visiting fans. Coach drivers were given designated routes to both the city centre and the stadium, and there were also extensive security operations and segregation considerations to prevent any violence between opposing fans.

The Results

With Manchester United being knocked out in the quarter finals, the final was contested between Italian teams AC Milan and Juventus (Turin). This reduced the complexity of having to cater for two different nationalities, but was effectively the largest movement scenario predicted at the modelling stage.

There were in excess of 600 extra flight arrivals and departures from Manchester Airport, in addition to the normal scheduled operations. This presented a major logistics challenge in itself, with the second runway being closed for the day to provide additional remote parking ramps, which in turn had a significant effect on slot times due to the use of a single runway.

The majority of fans arrived by air, and then transferred to coaches either directly to Old Trafford or via the city centre. Traffic congestion was not thought to be an issue, with less private vehicles attending than would be the case for a normal domestic match (stadium capacity is 69,000). Although the match went into extra time, compressing the departure window, virtually all flights departed within four hours of the end of the match.

Edinburgh Special Events (Hogmanay Celebrations, Edinburgh Festival, Rugby Union and One-off Events)

The Situation

Edinburgh city centre has enjoyed a renaissance in popularity in recent years, which has lead to huge growth in tourist and visitor numbers. In part, this is due to the number of special events that have now become regular items on the annual events calendar. These not only attract interest and prestige to the city, but there is a major economic benefit as well. The most famous of these are the Hogmanay (New Years Eve) celebrations, the Edinburgh Festival (comedy & performing arts) and the annual six nations rugby union matches, but there are also regular state visits and one off events, such as the Tall Ships.

Edinburgh have therefore commissioned a team to deliver the necessary package of measures required for each event and to provide the effective co-ordination of a number of different organisations.

The Solution

The process of managing the traffic arrangements requires expert knowledge of both the procedures and the local network characteristics and operations. This has lead to the creation of a number of working groups under an umbrella group called the Events Planning and Operations Group (EPOG). This effectively brings together an adequately resourced team of experienced practitioners able to build on past events, backed by reliable support staff, which has been found necessary to deliver proposals that are workable and safe. Groups represented include the Edinburgh Road Services, Corporate Communications, Emergency Planning, Police, Health & Safety, Fire and Ambulance Services, and Environmental departments.

The ethos of the Special Events team is one of 'Making Things Work' and this demands experience of traffic management and transport operations in the city centre. Typical event strategies will include temporary Traffic Regulation Orders, a consultation process with local residents and business, road closure and parking restriction drawings, barrier location drawings and traffic management layout drawings. There is a heavy emphasis on discouraging private car trips to the city centre during these events, and use of public transport is heavily promoted through a range of promotional and marketing activities. This complements existing sustainable travel measures being introduced throughout the city centre, with extensive pedestrianisation, and the provision of cycle facilities at rail and bus stations, as well as other strategic locations.