The Citycruise convoy rolls along Northbourne Avenue in Civic in 2012.

The Citycruise convoy rolls along Northbourne Avenue in Civic in 2012. Photo: Graham Tidy

Spectators are expected to line the streets as a convoy of up to 200 cars, possibly including some that are not street legal, take part in today's Summernats Citycruise down Northbourne Avenue and through the city.

It comes as police scale up their activity in north Canberra as the annual car fest comes to Exhibition Park.

The cruise means parts of Northbourne Avenue will be closed from noon to about 12.30pm, as the convoy passes intersections and authorities are warning of delays for other drivers trying to cross the thoroughfare.

Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC. Click for more photos

Summernats rolls into town

Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC. Photo: Graham Tidy

  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC.
  • Summernats 26 starts with vehicle scrutineering at EPIC. An entry, a 1955 Vauxhall Velox with air brushing on the boot.
  • Summernats entrant, 37 year old Rodney Phillips from Ruse in Sydney, has been visiting the event for the past 25 years. He is entering  his 1955 Vauxhall Velox, affectionately named "Chitty" by his 2 year old daughter Breanna. His wife, Belinda, 35, is visiting the event as well, making up the family group. Rodney's brother Daniel is responsible for the air brushing on the bonnet.

The Citycruise convoy will make its way from Gate 4 at Exhibition Park on Stirling Avenue, near the Caltex service station, at noon, and travel along Northbourne Avenue to London Circuit, before turning back up along Northbourne to return to the Summernats venue. 

There will be a police escort with a lead car, trailing car and motorcycles to assist with traffic control. Cars in the cruise will travel at 40 kilometres per hour and it is expected to take about 30 minutes.

The Territory and Municipal Services directorate said the city and Gate 4, Stirling Avenue, were the best places to see the cars. Barriers would be put up in these places and police would be on hand to help with crowd control.


View Summernats City Cruise in a larger map

"These locations are where the vehicles will be travelling at their slowest so people have more of a chance to see them," it said.

"There are various car parks in the City located off London Circuit, as well as in the Canberra Centre. Parking is available at EPIC via Old Well Station Road, off the Federal Highway. 

"The public is not permitted to view the event from the central median strip and will be moved on by ACT Policing if necessary. An alcohol ban will also be in place along the Federal Highway (from Stirling Avenue) and Northbourne Avenue."

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Summernats co-owner Andy Lopez said about 20,000 people, including 6000 in the city centre, watched last year's cruise, when the event returned after an extended absence. He said that today's cruise had been expanded to "include a limited number of non-street legal cars, including some blown big block V8s".

These cars have been given special approval to take part in the cruise. Road Transport Authority staff will be monitoring vehicles to ensure road rules are adhered to, and that cars were not illegal. 

"This includes checking for registration and looking for slick race tyres or illegal modifications," it said.

Police said in a statement that they would scale up their traffic enforcement activity throughout the Civic, Braddon and northern Canberra suburbs over the next few days.

Operational Commander for the event, Acting Superintendent Rod Anderson, said that working with the organisers over many years had given police a strong understanding of when and where issues were likely to occur, and how best to support the event security staff.

“We have a lengthy and established working relationship with the event organisers. We also have a police front office at EPIC and our officers will be visible and patrolling inside the event venue,” Acting Superintendent Anderson said.

“We have full confidence in the event security staff to handle issues which arise but will certainly have resources on standby to assist if required."

Police will focus on patrolling around Watson and Mitchell.

“We support Summernats and want to see everyone have a great time, but we won’t condone anti-social behaviour and flagrant breaches of the law,” Acting Superintendent Anderson said.

canberratimes.com.au