It’s that time of the year again! The annual Edmonton Heritage Festival is the city’s most prominent celebration of culture and diversity, as well as a staple in the summer festival season. Hundreds of thousands of people gather at Hawrelak Park to take part in the 2-day long celebrations, but the challenge with such a popular Edmonton event is just that: hundreds of thousands of people.
Transportation to get to the Heritage Festival will be nothing short of a gong show. Traffic along Groat Road and the River Valley can get backed up for several kilometres, and parking can be nonexistent on park grounds. Luckily, your friends at Great West Chrysler compiled a list of reliable transportation methods for you to get to the Heritage Festival stress-free!
The Edmonton Heritage Festival has a designated drop-off zone along Groat Road where drivers can drop their passengers off at the festival and continue exiting onto the main road called “Kiss & Drop” (we advise avoiding the literal sense while taking an Uber). Vehicles can enter the Kiss & Drop lane through either the North or South exits of Groat Road, which leads directly to the front of Hawrelak Park. Make sure to keep your drop-offs at two minutes or less to keep the flow of traffic moving and exit your vehicle from the right.
While getting dropped off by a friend or family member often worked in the past, we advise taking the other methods listed below as Groat Road is currently undergoing extensive reconstruction on major routes, leaving many lanes unusable and blocking the overall traffic flow.
One of the most reliable methods of transportation, the several ETS buses on hand will help bring you and everyone else to the Heritage Festival. If you currently don’t own a bus pass, an entire round trip to the festival and back only costs $6, while a $3 plus one transfer option is also available—children 12 and under ride free! Additionally, there are several conveniently-located Park & Ride locations for you to choose from, including:
- Burns City Lot (70 Street and 121 Avenue)
- Calder City Lot (124 Street and 124 Avenue)
- Davies City Lot (86 Street and 61 Avenue)
- Meadows Transit Centre (17 Street and 40 Avenue)
- Lewis Farms Transit Centre (Webber Greens Drive and 199 Street)
- Eaux Claires Transit Centre (157 Avenue and 97 Street)
- Windsor Car Park (116 Street and 93 Avenue) – Parking fares apply
- MacEwan University Surface Lot (109 Street and 105 Avenue SB)
- Lewis Farms Transit Centre also includes bus stop #5219 on 87 Avenue EB across the West Edmonton Mall Transit Centre
- Parking fares apply at the Windsor Car Park
- MacEwan University Surface Lot also includes street pick up on Jasper Avenue EB at 115 Street
- Park & Ride will not be available at NAIT. Instead, board the LRT at NAIT Station, then transfer at the Health Sciences or South Campus LRT Station.
If you’re looking to make some room for the wide tapestry of food available at the Edmonton Heritage Festival, biking to Hawrelak Park is the perfect way to go. It’s even better because the Festival has partnered with the Edmonton Bicycle Commuters Society (EBCS) to offer two supervised bicycle compounds at the north and south entrance of the park. EBCS also has volunteers at hand to give you some nifty maintenance tips, as well as minor bicycle tune-ups all day Saturday, 7pm-9pm Sunday, and 5:30pm-7:30pm Monday. Make sure you bring your own padlock and don’t forget that EBCS will only supervise the lock up until half an hour after the festival ends.
We hope you found this transportation guide as useful as we did. For more information, visit the official Heritage Festival website. From everyone here at Great West Chrysler, we hope you’ll enjoy the festivities!