The NSW Government has unveiled customised, accessible buses which will transport Invictus Games athletes around Sydney for the international competition, which opens this Saturday.
Seats have temporarily been removed from seven State Transit buses so all competitors, including those who are in wheelchairs or have mobility requirements, and support staff can travel together to their events.
Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance said it’s important teams from the 18 countries are able to get to and from venues as easily as possible, so they can focus on competing.
“The Invictus Games is a very special event and I’m delighted our city has been chosen to host these inspirational athletes. Over the coming days 500 competitors from around the world, together with their family and friends, will arrive in Sydney,” Mr Constance said.
“It’s the competitors who will drive these Games, and I’m glad we can help keep them moving, and get them to their events hassle free.”
Following the success of similar accessible buses used in the recent World Rugby Championships, State Transit CEO Steffen Faurby said he’s excited to provide a service that meets athletes’ needs for the first Invictus Games to be held in Australia.
“As hosts, we want to set the bar high and we are showing the world how to do that by accommodating all competitors and teams with these converted buses,” Mr Faurby said.
The buses will get teams to venues around Sydney Olympic Park over the eight days of competition and to the Opening Ceremony at the Sydney Opera House on Saturday 20 October.
Transport for NSW will also play a lead role in the overall success of the Games by ensuring competitors and spectators can get to events on time, safely and reliably across all modes of public transport.
Transport for NSW Coordinator General, Marg Prendergast said extra train services, including express trains between the city and Olympic Park every 30 minutes, and between Lidcombe and Olympic Park every 10 minutes, will run for the duration of the Games.
“Much like the Sydney Olympic Games, this is a terrific opportunity for our city and our transport network to shine and do our best for a great cause – we’ll make sure the Invictus warriors and their family and friends get to where they need to go,” Ms Prendergast said.
“We have put in an extraordinary level of planning and coordination to make sure our network runs as smoothly as possible.”
The first weekend of competition includes road cycling through The Domain and Royal Botanic Gardens and sailing in Farm Cove on Sydney Harbour. Events move to Sydney Olympic Park on Monday 22 October, and finish with a Closing Ceremony at Qudos Bank Arena on Saturday 27 October.
Pink tee shirt customer service staff will be on site at Circular Quay on the day of the Opening Ceremony, (this Saturday 20 October), assisting visitors and those attending events at the Opera House with trip planning and traffic information.
“The best way to get to events is by public transport – we’re encouraging people not to drive to events in the Sydney CBD on the opening weekend as changed traffic conditions, including clearways, road closures and some adjusted bus movements, will be in place.”
“Before heading out, make sure you’ve got your event ticket and your Opal card as you’ll need to tap on and off trains, buses, ferries and light rail.”
Transport for NSW is creating an accessible and inclusive transport network for all customers and is carrying out works to make train stations, light rail stops and ferry wharves across Sydney CBD fully accessible.
To plan your trip, visit www.transportnsw.info.
For details of road closures and special event clearways, check www.livetraffic.com