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The Cultural Centre busway station is located on the south bank just over the river from the city centre, and is served by a huge number of buses. It's also very busy, both with locals and tourists who've been visiting the nearby museums / galleries / waterfront walks. It only has one platform in each direction, and space for about 4 or 5 buses to pull up at a time.

There are various electronic display boards up along the platform, which all say something helpful like "refer to the printed timetables". The timetables tell you when buses are due, and (roughly) where each bus line goes to, but nothing about where along the ~150m platform you need to be to catch a particular bus.

Is there any way to know where along the platform you should be waiting for a given bus? I saw a few people waiting at the arrivals end who waved frantically to flag down their bus, then ran to where it stopped. However, I saw others just sitting at seats by one part of the platform, who just stood up when their bus came and were in the right place. Fairly sure I also saw someone miss a bus by being in the wrong place, but I'm not certain...

The Busway Station as seen from the bridge, from Ash Kyd at www.flickr.com/photos/21482825@N03/8567171839

Is there an order to where along the platform a given route stops (like at King George Square busway station), or is it just random and you have to keep you eyes open + run?

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You could ask somebody who is sitting confidently - but you'd have to speak Strine to do so. –  Russell McMahon Dec 22 '13 at 20:23

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Short answer - you don't know until your bus pulls up...

I ended up waiting a fair while at the Cultural Busway station today, and had a chance to ask someone, as well as to confirm by observation what they said.

At quiet times, a bus will always use stop 1, which is furthest from where they enter the platform (by the overpass for leaving the city, by the river towards the city). You'll therefore want to wait at that end

At slightly busy times, a bus will use stop 1 if it's free, otherwise stop 2, so you'll want to wait about half way between the two.

At busy times, all bets are off, and you just have to look and run! Buses will come in in a group, largely due to the traffic lights, and will fill up from stop 1 to stop 4. They won't wait long (at busy times it's pre-paid only which speeds things up), then they pull out and are off. If there were more than 4 buses waiting, bus 5 will wait outside the station until those 4 leave, then drive up to stop 1 (likely with other buses following behind it). Unless something goes wrong, they won't normally try to skip past buses waiting in stops 3 or 4 to get to stop 1, they'll wait for them to go first then drive in. If there are already a few buses stopped when another one arrives, it'll go for the next available stop.

At busy times, you therefore need to join the anxious crowd waiting somewhere around stops 2 and 3. That's far enough forward that you can just about see the numbers of the buses in every stop, but not so far that when the next flight come in you won't have a huge run if you bus goes for stop 1.

There are no announcements, and no information screens to help you. Therefore, if you're slow / have a lot of luggage / etc, your best bet is to catch the bus from either Queens Street or in/around King George Square (as appropriate for the route), where the stops are predictable. At busy times, Cultural Centre busway is a mess and therefore for speedy locals only....

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