13 February 2024

Give the car a miss during this year's National Multicultural Festival

| Claire Fenwicke
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Young dancers

Fess Serbian Dance Group performing at a sneak peek for the National Multicultural Festival. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

There’s less than a week to go before Canberra’s 2024 National Multicultural Festival kicks off and the government is looking to break attendance records.

About 380,000 people attended the 2023 event, and Multicultural Affairs Minister Mick Gentleman promises this year will be “bigger and better” than ever.

“We’ve had some really unique performances come to the ACT. It really draws a big crowd from right around Australia,” he said.

“The entertainment precincts will be lively this weekend, so come on down.”

There will be 80 performances over eight stages, including at Glebe Park.

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The headliners have already been announced, but an event in Canberra wouldn’t be complete without a ‘rethink your route’ message from Transport Canberra.

Free public transport will be provided this year from 4:30 pm on Friday, 16 February, to the end of services on Sunday, 18 February.

All you need to do is tap your MyWay card (if you have one) to register a $0 fee.

A free festival shuttle bus will also be available to get attendees around the festival precinct.

There will be several road closures in the lead-up to, during, and after the event (see the map below for full details).

Arrangements have been made for local residents and businesses to gain access during set times.

map of road closures for 2024 National Multicultural Festival

Several roads will be impacted as the city celebrates the National Multicultural Festival. Photo: Transport Canberra.

These road closures also mean there will be some bus detours and stop closures from Thursday, 15 February, until Sunday.

Bus stops 3002 (London Circuit opposite the Legislative Assembly), 3004 (London Circuit after Akuna Street) and 3356 (Legislative Assembly) will be closed. Information on alternative arrangements is detailed online.

However, a special event timetable has scheduled more frequent light rail services.

More services will run in both directions from 6:30 pm Friday to 5:30 pm Sunday.

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Barry Barnes2:55 pm 19 Feb 24

It is all good saying that people should use public transport but what about the people with disabilities who cannot use this type of transport and struggle to walk long distances. Needs to be some consideration for these people as they as much of the community as everyone else.

Last year I tried going early in the afternoon. I thought ‘park at the City Center Parking’ there’s plenty of room there! How wrong I was!🤦‍♂️ Although I don’t like catching public transport, it might be the best option.

Yep lots of people at the multi culti equals lots of cars. The issue with the public transport setup, is many parts of the city lost their public transport options and have hours of travel and wait times.

Capital Retro4:59 pm 14 Feb 24

Will Mick Gentleman be using public transport or his personal job-provided car park at the Legislative Assembly building?

“Give the car a miss and use public transport.”

Said no Canberra resident ever who doesn’t live within a walk of a Rapid Bus or Light Rail stop.

You wait up to two hours for a local bus at each end of your trip and will spend more time on a bus than enjoying this fantastic event.

If the author wants to actually flex their journalistic muscles and write something relevant, then how about instead of this Canberra Transport fluff piece, the author write about the removal of 750 suburban bus stops, the cut in local bus services and the reduction in weekend bus services back from 2019.

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