MANILA, Philippines — Fiba sees transportation as one of the biggest concerns ahead of the Philippines hosting the Fiba World Cup 2023 matches from August 25 to September 5.
Fiba World Cup 2023 Executive Director David Crocker was thrilled after the simulation match between UAAP champion Ateneo and NCAA titlist Letran on Wednesday at Smart Araneta Coliseum, but he thinks transporting the teams from the hotel to the place would be a challenge.
“Transportation is the biggest challenge. There are many people trying to move around Metro Manila at the same time as we would like. We had excellent cooperation with the highway patrol group to help us find the best routes and clear traffic. But we are also careful not to create a dilemma for the general public as well. So we try to find a simple way to understand everything. Transportation is absolutely the biggest challenge,” Crocker said shortly after the first game at the Big Dome.
“If you could imagine the players getting on the bus, coming to the games and having the experience of nice, smooth traffic when they get here, they’d feel great. We had times in the past where maybe a bus was going the wrong way, so players were frustrated, they came here and weren’t ready to play. These are a few examples of every time we have to do well,” he added.
Erika Dy, deputy event manager, said the local organizing committee held a mock transport from the Grand Hyatt to Araneta Coliseum and Philippine Arena on Tuesday as well as from Conrad to Mall of Asia Arena. And the bus ride to Bocaue, Bulacan was a challenge.
“In terms of transportation that was simulated yesterday, so we had buses from Grand Hyatt to Araneta as well as Philippine Arena, even from Conrad to MOA. We had to test this even though it was a very short distance. It went well. The Philippine Arena tour was always a challenge, we always hope to gain a few more minutes,” said Dy.
“Right now we’re using the bus lane so we have to coordinate properly with the various bus stops because that’s where the clog happened yesterday. It’s hard to be in the only bus lane because we can’t get out all the time so when there are people loading onto the buses at the bus stops we have to stop so that’s something we need to clarify when the actual games will begin.
Dy said they will have another round of transport simulation for Grand Hyatt at Philippine Arena.
“We could redo the transport specifically from the Grand Hyatt to the Philippine Arena. We didn’t have any issues yesterday with transporting the teams from the Grand Hyatt to the Smart Araneta Coliseum and we also experienced this drought during the draw and it went well,” she said. added.
Dy gave the test games a 5 out of 10 with plenty of work to do 58 days before the World Cup.
“What we’re really trying to test here is foot traffic, the flow of different workgroups as well as other clients we have. There are a lot of things that we have already noticed that are not supposed to happen so it is good that we are able to report so early,” the LOC official said.
“Overall, I would give it a 5 out of 10, which means there’s a lot to work around,” she said. “When we had our last briefing a few days ago, it was really the goal to spot as many issues as possible. be honest, if i don’t see any issues today, i’ll be more worried, so i’m glad things are out so we can fix them early.
Crocker was pleased with what he saw and is optimistic the LOC can work on areas for improvement ahead of the World Cup.
“I’m leaning towards 6 and a half or 7. Those things they can control, they can do better, and that’s what we’re talking about. Those things that are the ecosystem such as travel that are going to be strategic and have collaborated with other models to make it work well,” the Fiba official said.
Fiba World Cup Executive Director David Crocker during the test event at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
“I think his self-criticism is a bit difficult at the moment, but that’s what we expect. To look at him inside. Did we get it right? Was it perfect? Then we improve it It all depends on how we move players, we tested the transport system yesterday at a good time of day but it started to rain a bit, evening traffic so we got to see what the situation might be. experience and how we could move buses through this traffic.
“I am impressed with the LOC team. They reflect on the challenges and must find solutions. I joined the meeting yesterday with all the staff. I hear them talking about the areas of operations, the state of readiness, but I think we have a very good team. A very capable (team) that can perform well in the World Cup,” he added.
Along with the venue and transport test games, Dy said the local band and Fiba are also working on their next collaboration.
“It’s really working together. The LOC group and some Fiba staff are there, learning how everyone likes to work, picking up habits here and there. And try to be in tune with each other so we can work together,” she said.
The Big Dome, which now has a newly renovated facade and new lighting, is expected to complete other renovations, including the media area, in mid-July.
“We are on time in terms of construction. It looks very different than it did months ago. I think by mid-July it’s going to be in shape already,” Dy said.
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