Greater Auckland is proud to present the Congestion Free Network 2

Auckland is a city in transition. We are no longer the car dependent ‘overgrown town’ of the late 20th century. Yet we are also not yet a true world-class city. Auckland has come so far in the past 15 years, but we also still have so far to go.

Auckland is increasingly different from the rest of New Zealand. We are younger, more diverse, more educated and more productive. We are also growing much faster and will continue to do so. There is no going back to the Auckland of old.

Yet Auckland faces immense challenges as we grow and transition from an overgrown town into a world-class city. The narrow isthmus that makes Auckland such an attractive place to live also makes our city relatively difficult to get around. A history of neglecting public transport has caught up with us, despite recent progress.

Auckland needs and deserves a bold transport vision. We need a realistic alternative to get around that is fast, reliable and attractive. We need a network free from congestion, a Congestion Free Network.

It is now nearly four years since we launched the original Congestion Free Network in July 2013 and much has changed. Encouragingly, much of our original CFN has been adopted by both Auckland Council and Central Government, through the Auckland Transport Alignment Project (ATAP).

Key parts of the CFN are being progressed: the rail network is now electrified, City Rail Link is under construction and busways to the north, northwest and southeast are under development. A completely reshaped bus network is being implemented and we now, finally have both integrated ticketing and integrated fares.

With the adoption of the Unitary Plan, we have also learned a lot more about how Auckland will grow in the future and what that growth means for our transport network. Put bluntly, unless we invest heavily in serving new “greenfield” growth areas with congestion free transport options we will repeat the expensive, disastrous, mistakes that litter our history. Similarly, as existing urban areas intensify we will need to shift more people in the same amount of space – a task that is simply impossible by car.

Aucklanders have flocked to buses, trains and ferries over the past four years, especially where major improvements have been made. During this time, annual ridership on the rail network and the Northern Busway – our still embryonic CFN – has grown from 12.3 million to 22.9 million.

With such momentous change, it’s time to re-look at the Congestion Free Network and to align it with present day conditions. With ATAP showing government’s agreement, that Auckland needs a strategic public transport network – what we call a “Congestion Free Network”, the debate now is not if we should build it, but when.

The Congestion Free Network 2

WHAT IS A CONGESTION FREE NETWORK?

The Congestion Free Network forms the backbone of Auckland’s future public transport network, supported by further bus and ferry networks. As the name suggests, the key purpose of this network is to provide a way of travelling that is free from congestion. This means rail, light-rail and bus services operating in their own right-of-way that are fast, frequent and reliable.

All great cities have a Congestion Free Network – be it the London Underground, the New York Subway or the Paris Metro. These networks provide the opportunity for vast numbers of people to travel in a way that makes congestion irrelevant. They also mean road networks can focus on the jobs they do well – for freight, commercial travel and highly dispersed trips, rather than having to cater for high volumes of trips along highly constrained corridors.

Having a Congestion Free Network therefore balances the city’s transport system, making the whole network work better.

WHAT’S IN CFN 2?

CFN2 has seven key routes: two light-rail, two heavy-rail, three bus rapid transit (BRT). It also contains three enhanced bus routes.

Light Rail Lines

New and improved mass transit lines connecting the North Shore, Northwest, the Isthmus and the airport have been identified as key strategic routes. We suggest these should be connected together in two lines to form a second, high-speed, high-capacity network to complement our improving heavy rail system. We believe modern, light-rail – building upon Auckland Transports recent investigations and with vehicles capable of carrying up to 500 people each – would be the most appropriate mode for these routes.

A. Central Line. This new ‘North-South’ line forms a spine for Auckland’s public transport system, running from Orewa in the north to the Airport in the south. It serves the growing Dairy Flat area, the North Shore, the city centre, central isthmus and southwest part of the city out to the Airport.

B. North-western Line. This new line runs from Waimauku in the fast-growing northwest, through to Westgate and along State highway 16, joining the Central Line though the city centre and across the Waitemata Harbour, before branching off to Takapuna.

Heavy Rail Lines

The City Rail Link turns our existing rail network into a high frequency two-line system. This is enhanced with further improvements the network, such as signalling, junction improvements and removing level crossings, to provide improved service and reliability.

C. Western Line. This heavy rail line takes advantage of the City Rail Link to join up the current Western and Onehunga lines. Enabling higher-frequencies on the Onehunga Line will require double-tracking and the removal of a number of existing level crossings between Onehunga and Penrose.

D. Southern Line. Like the Western Line, this utilises the City Rail Link to join up the existing Southern and Eastern lines. Additional tracks and BRT enable express services to run from Puhinui to Newmarket with only two intermediate stops. A high-quality bus/rail interchange will be provided at Puhinui.

Bus Rapid Transit Lines

Like the Northern Busway today, these routes utilise large amounts of dedicated busway infrastructure and other priority measures to ensure services are fast, frequent and reliable. They may be suitable to upgrade to light rail in the future.

E. South-Eastern BRT. This line connects the Airport with Puhinui (to link with the rail network), Manukau, Flat Bush and Botany. It provides a fast route to the Airport for people living in south and southeast Auckland and also supports the growing metropolitan centre of Manukau. With bus capacity along this route likely to be less constrained compared to the city centre, we envisage the most appropriate mode being high-quality bus rapid transit, operating in its own right of way.

F. North-East BRT. This line utilises the Eastern busway from Botany to Panmure, linking through to the city via Great South Road and onto the Onewa Road corridor, to serve the western part of the North Shore. As the route supplements other lines (particularly A and D), we envisage bus rapid transit to be an appropriate mode, utilising the existing harbour bridge.

G. Upper Harbour BRT. This line connects Henderson and Albany through the fast-growing northwest. It provides congestion free travel along Lincoln Road, utilises the SH16 shoulder lanes to Westgate, before travelling along SH18 to Constellation Station where it connects to Line A. Expected demand levels and less constrained terminus points mean bus rapid transit is an appropriate mode for this route.

Limited Stop Bus Lines

H. Two limited stop bus lines provide for cross town connections while a third connects Silverdale to Gulf Harbour. These routes are a step between traditional bus routes and the dedicated infrastructure of bus rapid transit. They would use standard bus priority measures and only stop major locations to provide fast and reliable cross town services between the key CFN routes. These could potentially be upgraded to BRT in the future.

WHAT’S CHANGED FROM CFN 1?

In the four years since CFN 1 was published, Auckland has taken huge strides towards making our vision a reality.

  • The City Rail Link, still the core of Auckland’s future public transport network, is now under construction.
  • The Eastern busway (formerly AMETI) in the southeast and the Northern Busway extension to Albany are being designed and consented.
  • The Northwest Busway is now accepted by all parties as a key priority for completion within the next decade.

CFN 1 now forms the basis of the Strategic PT Network outlined in ATAP, a vision now shared by Council and Central Government.
But the world has also moved on from 2013 and we know much more about where Auckland will grow, and our future transport needs and challenges. This has led to three key changes from CFN1:

  1. Introducing a 90 kilometre light-rail system to Auckland across two main lines that extends rail-based congestion free transport to the northwest, the North Shore, the central isthmus and the Airport. These are not “dinky trams”, but rather a grunty core part of the overall network with 66 metre long vehicles carrying up to 500 people each and travelling at up to 110 km/h when possible.
  2. Three key “cross town” limited stop bus corridors to supplement the rail and bus rapid transit routes. The northernmost route, from Gulf-Harbour to Silverdale, serves the Whangaparaoa Peninsula; while the other two (Pt Chevalier to Howick and New Lynn to Flat Bush) cut across the central isthmus and connect to multiple north-south lines (Lines A, B, C, D, E and F).
  3. Further extending the CFN into greenfield areas, including light-rail to the north and northwest to complement the existing heavy rail that serves the south. Ensuring a strong commitment to early investment in these areas is critical to their future urban form, creating transit-oriented developments that avoid the growth mistakes Auckland has made in the past.

But the main way CFN 2 is different, is because the focus must now shift from what the vision is, to how we make it happen. The CFN largely aligns with what is proposed in ATAP, and agreed to by Council and Central Government. But ATAP is simply too slow when it comes to implementation. Public transport in ATAP is still, too often, the intervention of last resort only progressed after road widening has – once again – proven to be a failed strategy.

The CFN takes a different approach. We outline a clear way forward to make ATAP’s “strategic public transport network” happen much faster. All up, government costings show the CFN to cost around $13-14 billion – barely one-sixth of ATAP’s total 30-year transport programme and therefore clearly affordable.

NEXT STEPS

The focus of CFN2 is, therefore, on how to make it happen. Here the ball lies mainly in Central Government’s court as it holds most of the purse-strings and levers, but Auckland Council and Auckland Transport play key roles too. Key decisions need to be made for the CFN to become a reality:

Government & NZTA
Auckland Council
Auckland Transport
  • Creating a dedicated activity class in the Government Policy Statement (GPS) for progressing CFN2, with sufficient funding.
  • Embedding CFN2 into the refreshed Auckland Plan as a core component of Auckland’s transport and growth strategy.
  • Clearly outlining a delivery path and funding requirements for CFN2 in the upcoming Regional Land Transport Plan.
  • Identifying the NZ Transport Agency as having lead responsibility for delivering CFN lines A-G.
  • Working with Government to reach agreement on funding approaches for delivering CFN2.
  • Updating the Regional Public Transport Plan to incorporate CFN2.
  • NZTA and Auckland Transport working together to protect routes for the whole CFN2 within the next five years.
  • Lead agency for planning and implementing the identified limited stops bus routes.
  • Working with NZTA to protect routes for the whole CFN2 within the next 5 years.

We want CFN 2 to become a reality. Over the coming days and weeks we’ll be discussing the CFN 2 in more detail, including looking closer at what’s proposed for each part of the region along with many of the decisions we made along the way.

Much of this has been captured by Harriet in our CFN Report (26mb) which also looks amazing thanks to the design genius of Cornelius from Frontier for the design – who is also behind our website.

You can also see a more detailed version of the map. Feel free to download, print, distribute, draw on, set alight, decorate your room, or re-blog.

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230 comments

    1. The map looks nice but the thinking is flawed. Auckland has a housing affordability and a traffic congestion problem and the only solution is to spread out with a good outer circular motorway system like Paris or Beijing – so the option is to drive out and around the congestion and also service vast areas of low cost housing and employment areas on the fringes

      The plan you have here only helps wealthy (mainly white) people get to work a bit quicker – because the authors are familiar with that world. I doubt NZers want to pay $13B for these people to go from their multi-million dollar houses to their high paid jobs. The CRL is already costing the taxpayer $300K per commuter – this new effort will cost the same as 50 regional hospitals and I dont see the benefits of this plan will be very easy to sell.

      1. ‘Auckland has a housing affordability and a traffic congestion problem and the only solution is to spread out’.

        Care to explain why this is the only solution to this problem? It sounds to me like the worst solution to the problem. Commits people on lower incomes to long commutes that require private car ownership.

        I can certainly think of other solutions.

        1. Yes is does sound counter-intuitive but commute times in cities are always less on the fringes – and more convenient as they generally don’t involve public transport. As you will know buses produce about 25% more CO2 emissions per commuter that a car – so that problem is reduced too.

          One of the myths of Auckland is that a significant proportion of people work in the centre- in fact there is only around 15% – 100,000 or so. Around the same as Wellington. Yet most of the “popular” transport solutions involve making this small populations peak time commute more convenient.

          What Auckland needs are solutions which improve housing affordability and travel time reduction for ordinary working people – nothing in the Unitary Plan or transport plans like this will achieve this – in fact they have the opposite effect.

          BTW things like busways, walkways and cycleways can be built into new networks at little cost at the fringes.

          1. “Yes is does sound counter-intuitive but commute times in cities are always less on the fringes [citation needed] – and more convenient [citation needed] as they generally don’t involve public transport. As you will know buses produce about 25% more CO2 emissions per commuter that a car [citation needed] – so that problem is reduced too.

            One of the myths of Auckland is that a significant proportion of people work in the centre- in fact there is only around 15% – 100,000 or so. Around the same as Wellington. Yet most of the “popular” transport solutions involve making this small populations peak time commute more convenient [statement does not follow from information source].

            What Auckland needs are solutions which improve housing affordability and travel time reduction for ordinary working people – nothing in the Unitary Plan or transport plans like this will achieve this [citation needed]– in fact they have the opposite effect [citation needed].

            BTW things like busways, walkways and cycleways can be built into new networks at little cost at the fringes.”

            I reviewed your input. It needs work.

          2. Are commute times really shorter on the fringe of cities? I would have thought on average people on the fringe of cities will live significantly further from work.

            I agree the majority of jobs in Auckland are not in the CBD, however they are not concentrated on the fringe, they are spread out all over the place, generally resulting in longer commutes.

            The unitary plan certainly does offer solutions to travel times, as it allows for intensification that will allow more people to choose to live closer to areas of higher employment density.

            Just out of interest where would your ring motorway go?

          3. No, that is empirically false for Auckland. They know the distance people commute to work from the census. This is by all modes and to their actual job locations, wherever in the region that might be. The people that live on the fringe travel the longest average distances from their home to their work. This is fact.
            See the map here: http://www.greaterauckland.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/trip-length-by-origin.jpg

            Also 15% of Aucklander work downtown, but if you take a slightly broader view of the Centre out to Newmarket the figure is 24%.

            If you add in the next few major employment clusters, the figures is 50%.

            In other words, a quarter of Aucklanders work in the City Centre, and half of all Aucklanders work in just a half-dozen places.

          4. No idea what you’re been smoking Graeme but every single statement in your comment is not just wrong, but exactly 180 degrees wrong: the complete reverse of the facts.

            1. People living on AKL’s fringes, no matter where they work, drive more and for longer than the average. The data on this is very good and very clear. Fewer suburban or exurban dwellers work or study very close to where they live.

            2. Bus do not cause more pollution per journey than car drivers. Do you include the train users in this absurd claim, how about people on bikes or people, like most of the 47k city dwellers, who walk to work or study? Are these also somehow polluting more than drivers?

            3. Enabling more dwellings to be built everywhere, as the Unitary Plan, is an important step towards more affordable house, though not a complete one, they also have to be funded and built.

            4. Building more roads for longer car journeys from further out in the newly ruined countryside cannot either improve journey times nor lower the financial burden of multiple car ownership for households.

            And finally, no one is stopping you live out wherever you want and drive for hours each day if that is your choice, in fact the government and city subsidise it. So what’s your point?

          5. Patrick, buses users do use more energy and produce more greenhouse gases than people in cars. Trains are better of course – but not as much as you would imagine.( In NZ because we have a lot of renewable electricity trains do better with CO2). Wikipeadia says train passengers use 1.84 MJ/passenger km, cars are 2.31 and buses use 2.78. These are US figures so I would expect our smaller cars to use less energy – and our older bus fleet to use more.

            But of course as you will know Auckland cars are not a very big contributor to NZ greenhouse gas emissions anyway – around 3% I think. So there are very little gains to be had by reducing the car trips down – esp if those people mistakenly moved to buses.

            If you have other figures I would be happy to see them.

          6. I don’t think you have traveled much in the US if you think our bus fleet would be older and used less efficiently than theirs.

          7. Graeme none of your numbers are credible. AKL’s passenger trains are electric, and that electricity is entirely generated from renewable sources. Freight trains are diesel and account for the GHG emissions from rail. The buses are both increasingly new and lower emission and increasingly full, so your per passenger figure is extremely hard to believe, especially as you show no source. Below is AKL’s GHG profile from 2014, do show evidence to back your claim that cars contribute little to GHG emissions:

            source: http://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/SiteCollectionDocuments/aboutcouncil/planspoliciespublications/technicalpublications/tr2016044aucklandsgreenhousegasinventoryto2014.pdf

          8. Yes, Graeme, the average bus in the US carries fewer than 7 people, so it makes sense for it to be less efficient than a car.

            Our average is far higher than that, our buses are far newer overall. So no, in New Zealand, that doesn’t apply. Further, the entire point of dense cities and good PT is to get buses consistently mostly full, just like the NEX. The NEX, 881, and 962 carry over 4.5m pax/year on 125,000 services. An average occupancy of 37 pax/bus.

          9. Yes Patrick Auckland cars look to be exactly what I said – 3% of the national GHG emissions. The figure for all Akl road transport (buses, trucks, commercials and cars) is about 3.9M tonnes from 70 odd M tonnes total. So remove the non-car vehicles and it would be around 3%. So in the unlikely scenario that PT could remove a third of the cars from Auckland’s roads – then you would only have a drop of 1% of the total NZ GHG emissions.

            And of course should most of that 1/3rd transfer to buses -then there would be no saving at all. Probably an increase.

            So I think we can say conversion to PT for global environmental reasons is a not an argument you can use.

          10. Graeme this is just more bullshit. You are still relying on an inaccurate and irrelevant US claim sourced from Wikipedia for your assertion that buses are more polluting than cars. This is simply untrue in Auckland. Secondly, you use averaging to try to minimise the appearance of emissions. Road transport is the single biggest cause of GHG pollution in Auckland, and of course a huge source of other pollution from particulates through to run-off. To simply say that it is a smaller number than an even bigger one elsewhere is irrelevant.

            All cuts to GHG gas emissions have to happen in detail at every source. Road transport, and private cars are the biggest component of Auckland’s road transport, is the biggest problem in Auckland. And every trip that is made on an alternative to private car use not only directly reduces the city’s pollution problem but also reduces traffic congestion making the remaining road users, including buses and road freight, less polluting too.

            You are just making up numbers to try to fudge very simple and straightforward facts.

          11. Patrick – what percentage of NZ’s GHG emissions are Auckland cars responsible for? And what can changing to PT achieve in terms of savings – as a percentage of NZ total emissions?

            I have provided what I think the figures are – (3% – and Zero) what are yours?

      2. You’ve got to be kidding me.

        Q: Why don’t we build a good outer circular motorway system like Paris?

        A: On maps of Auckland you see those big blue blobs. We can’t build motorways in those big blue blobs.

        Also, you have to be fair, and also figure out how much (for instance) the Waterview connection or the Additional Harbour Crossing would cost per extra commuter. I suspect they’ll come in much worse than any PT link. Where does that $300K per commuter come from anyway?

        1. The 300k figure assumes that only about 10,000 new people per day use the CRL, and that they are the same people every single day. It achieves this by only counting people going to the two new stations in peak hours.

          There will be closer to 90,000 people a day using the trains and thus benefiting from the CRL. The total cost works out to about $28k per passenger,or $14k per trip on the train at $2.5b cost for the CRL. Using a 40 year assessment period, this works out to $0.95 per trip, even if we assume that rail ridership only gets to 55m pax/annum.

        2. AECOM estimated an Eastern Ring Motorway in ATAP at over 11b on its own of course you would need to widen SH1 North as well so add another 2b on so basically an eastern ring by itself would cost more than CFN 2.0.

        3. The $300K per peak time commuter figure is correct and id derived from AT’s figures. The 10,000 users is AT’s difference between the CRL being built and not being built. You cant count people who may use if off peak as its not required for off peak use. That is just manipulating the figures.

          Building ring motorways obviously create housing and employment land – its the uplift in values here which can be taxed to pay for the roading. So there is not tax burden – which always falls on the working class anyway.

          What you plan here is a yet another example of how wealth is transferred from people in honest labour to the privileged controlling elites. They get the benefit of house/land price increase at the expense of the worker.

          This wacky transport plan cannot result in lower cost housing at all – and cannot improve traffic congestion for most people.

          1. Graeme – how on earth would your transport plan reduce congestion? You are encouraging people to spread out and therefore have to travel further to work and you expect traffic congestion to be reduced. I think your plan might be the wacky one.

            Also wouldn’t the people who are being taxed for their increased land values on the fringes as a result of new motorway construction be the working class who live in these areas!?

          2. Graeme. Currently around 70k trips are taken on the rail network each week day. And this is rising rapidly and has been rising rapidly consistently since electrification and the new trains, at rough 1 million additional trips every 4 months. Last month rail ridership on an annual basis hit 19million, 117 days after after hitting 18million. These are 70k trips not made by driving or even on a bus. And as bus use is rising too these are new trips to PT. And 70k trips is around 1400 completely full buses. It is way more spatially and financial efficient to have these trips carried on big vehicles on their own right of way, out of traffic and not in the way of other roads users.

            To say that the CRL will add merely 10k new users is entirely absurd, it will accelerate the current growth trend, at the very least doubling. Moving from say 25m annual trips to 50million in a few years. The value of these trips to the efficient functioning of biggest engine in the New Zealand economy is huge and way outside of your curiously limited calculations.

          3. “You cant count people who may use if off peak as its not required for off peak use. That is just manipulating the figures.”

            Of course we can’t count that 70,000 existing trips which *all* become faster from the CRL, just like we don’t count travel time benefits for motorway users outside of peak hours. /sarc

        1. Yeah at end of the day lots of dev in this area, also what if Port moves or is made smaller.

          No forced transfers for Tamaki Drive Buses, they would most likely be put onto a freed up Customs freeing up Quay St past the port fully for people.

  1. Interesting. Much more rapid transit into the hinterlands to serve growth areas compared to CFN 1.0. Do the authors envisage skipping the North-Western Busway completely and jumping straight to light rail?

    1. Depends on funding either 2 options do Te Atatu-Westgate Busway section with stations then upgrade later when we do rest of the route, or if funding can just do it.

    2. if funding is not available in the near future then it would be good to see a rail dmu shuttle service between Henderson or Swanson and out NW to at least Huapai. Similar to the current dmu shuttle Papakura to Pukekohe.
      Although not sure if there are enough of the ten ADLs sets to achieve this.

  2. I have always wondered about light rail to the north west but was never sure how it could be integrated into the network. Let’s hope AT and NZTA actually act on this!

    1. Yeah well this is a possibility as the NS demand will be much greater than Dom/SW demand so uneven, so this allows us to use the capacity needed for NS out to both NW & Dom/SW without needing to terminate so many services in town or running excess capacity on a route which costs OPEX.

    2. Yes would be great to see light rail over a busway down the northwestern. How cool would it be to catch rail to the shore from the west! Unfortunately we don’t have dynamic leaders or business leaders in this country for this to happen.

      1. I expect immediate public support from the Greens and maybe Labour on that prospect, from what they have been saying. This stuff is not fringe; it’s common sense.

        What century do we insist our transport policy reflects? Want a finned 50s Chevy on the subsidised macadam, then go back the current dinosaur throwbacks. Otherwise, energise ..

        1. Oh Sacha, that is an unfair question. I’m not really that keen on a modern bland automobile, but yes, of COURSE I would like a finned 50s Chevy. A whole lot of ridiculous, over the top, chromed madness right there – but man, cars had style back then. Crazy, but character by the bucketload. Gimme some of that old time religion…

  3. Good stuff – no stub heavy rail line from Western Line to Owairaka tho? I guess you see that need catered for with LRT?

    1. Yes and also basically we are going to need all the capacity we can get out west in the long run, spur adds junction and splits capacity for two stations one which is served by direct by LRT.

    2. It will be interesting to see if KR abandon the Avondale-Southdown route for the LR to use between end Dom Rd and Onehunga. I suspect not. There appears to be some growth in freight on the NAL, the 10am thru Glen Eden north bound freight can be near a Km long and with DX and DF locos often in use it may get to having to run more than one daily northbound again.
      Most times it wont fit in the loops at Waitakere so that could be an issue if dmu services start again.
      This one freight train is just about squeezing into a pathway between emus and who knows if there will be any paths possible, especially inner western line, Newmarket etc, if freight volumes grow and the CRL comes on line.
      The Avondale-Southdown may get resurrected and perhaps you will get your Owairaka

      1. How many freight trains currently run per day in each direction on the NAL?

        This would be another benefit of having rail infrastructure being under the NZTA umbrella, they would then be able to assess whether the best value of this route is urban public transport or long distance freight. Although I believe this designation is wide enough for both.

        I imagine it would take a substantial increase in NAL freight to justify the expense of building the Avondale – Southdown line.

  4. Congratulations – very well done. The CFN map looks great – and now AT / AC / NZTA know the way forward. 26mB file downloaded and preparing to read.

    With this, Auckland may truly become Greater.

      1. It is indeed.

        As a serious suggestion, and just in case they don’t read blogs, can I suggest that you print out and bind a few copies and send them personally addressed to Simon Bridges, Phil Goff, David Warburton, Stephen Joyce, Bill English, Andrew Little etc? They need to not be able to say “I don’t know, I haven’t read it”.

          1. I hope Maggie Barry is on that distribution list. As a supporter of the government’s AWAC she needs a re-educating rev up.

  5. Really great network. Can I ask though how it will be congestion free? Are you promising no crowding in the vehicles?

      1. Sorry I forgot. When it comes to public transport we are supposed to assume: 1/ vehicles don’t have any capacity limit; 2/ someone will just keep adding vehicles as needed; and 3/ lines don’t have a capacity limit either. (maybe they are assuming if a line is full then all you need do is build your way out of congestion?)

        I am calling bullshit.

        1. I see you haven’t read any of the discussion on LRT vs HR to the airport which is basically only argued on these three points.

        2. You are simply (and presumably intentionally) misrepresenting what congestion means in this use – i.e. not being stuck in traffic delays. Moving more people past the queues on the roads.

          The fact that a word can be used in two different ways doesn’t mean one use is “bullshit”.

          What IS bullshit is the “roads, and more roads” people like you saying that adding more car capacity solves any about the problems the drive to more car capacity has always created.

        3. Miffy, as ideologically opposed as you are to what these people are doing, it would be really good if, perhaps, just for once, you tried to be a bit supportive. Yes, it’s free speech and all, but maybe you could try to turn over a new, less cynical leaf?

          1. I am not ideologically opposed to public transport. But I am opposed to designing transport networks without assessing benefits and costs. If you do that you are no better than the roads numpties who keep pushing ridiculous projects as RoNS or those idiots who want mono-rails. I am also mildly irritated by people claiming roads are a failure if there is still congestion (despite increasing the number who can travel) while claiming PT is somehow free of congestion.

          2. I think the “Congestion Free” refers to the property that this network will not be crippled by congestion on a different transport system (the road network).

            As to benefits, it’s easily observable, even for lay people, that expanding PT is a much more effective way than expanding roads to increasing the number who can travel. Eg. what if we spent XXX million on an extra harbour crossing instead of the northen busway? I doubt we would have been able to double the number who can travel that way for a similar cost.

          3. Thanks for explaining that roeland. On that basis they might as well call it the Gluten Free Network. I mean compared to something else that has gluten in it this network won’t have any gluten at all.

          4. Now you are getting it mfwic. Gluten free bread is marketed as gluten free in the same way that this network is advertised as congestion free.

        4. Congestion free, unlimited data, lifetime guarantee – all examples of reasonable shorthand that only the pedantic and argumentative would take issue with

    1. Crowding on PT vehicles has a different effect than traffic congestion. While standing on a bus or train may be less comfortable, it doesn’t actually make your journey any longer. While travelling on a congested road may mean that you arrive late for an appointment, travelling on a full bus will still get you there on time, provided that it’s got a separate right-of-way.

      Although I haven’t looked at the numbers I would expect CFN2 (if implemented) to significantly reduce PT vehicle crowding for two reasons:

      1. It proposes converting several major bus corridors to light rail, which will increase seated capacity on these routes and hence mitigate peak crowding.
      2. It proposes adding new bus priority measures to a number of corridors, which will enable an increase in the frequency and reliability of buses and, again, mitigate peak crowding.

      1. Peter try getting a bus from Mt Eden to the city. Crowding means you just can’t get on so you wait for the next and sometimes the one after that. Whether it is a road or PT there is still a capacity. When demand exceeds that capacity congestion occurs. But I do accept both your points. Martin Mogridge used to argue that PT had a downward sloping marginal cost while roads had an upward sloping MC. What he didn’t seem to get is that PT has a capacity as well. You only get a downward MC until you reach the point where you have to double down and build a new line. Economies of scale occur because you have already paid a high fixed cost, once the system is full you have to pay again. I hit this modelling Thameslink in London.

        1. Of course PT has capacity, but yes it is downward sloping until you reach that point. They main difference is that a lane of rail or busway can move at least 10,000 people an hour until it reaches that point and you have to build another lane. Unlike a motorway where you get about a fifth that out of a lane, or an arterial road with a tenth.

          PS: Peter knows very well about bus crowding on Mt Eden Rd, I hear him gripe about it every other day!

        2. Yeah, I’ve been taking the Mt Eden road bus to work for five years so I’m well familiar with the situation. Here’s what I’ve noticed:

          1. In 2015 and early 2016, demand was getting to a critical point where it was common to have 1-3 full buses pass at (say) 830am, which basically added 5-15 minutes to expected travel time. However, once on the bus I’d almost always get to town in 20 minutes.

          2. Introduction of double decker buses at slightly lower frequencies alleviated capacity constraints and the full bus issue is now much less frequent. While DDs are a step change in capacity, they’re not orders of magnitude more expensive to run.

          3. At present, the main issues for reliability of journey time are: (a) the Mt Eden shops intersection, which often holds up buses for two or three minutes at a time; (b) bus volumes on Symonds St, which is admittedly a thorny problem; and (c) dwell times while people are boarding, which could be reduced via all-doors boarding.

          Two of those three fixes are pretty cheap. Obviously you’re not going to be able to jam more buses forever, but my rough estimate is that a properly optimised urban bus corridor can move something on the order of 4-5,000 people per hour at an average speed of 15-20km/hr in a single traffic lane while recovering 80-100% of operating costs.

  6. What are the specific goals of CFN2 i.e. what will be the differences in average travel time in say 2030 if we build CFN2 or if we don’t build CFN2?

    It makes “surface” sense but investments of this magnitude need to have really clear (and ambitious, given the $$$$) goals. If this could cut say 10 minutes per person per day it’d probably be worth it.

      1. Surely the objectives of any multi-billion dollar project should be the first things we read?
        “We’re investing 100m in new clinics vs. we’re going to perform 500 more hip operations a year”

      2. Page 21: 11 minute saving from light rail from North Shore
        There isn’t any other quantitative benefit in the case I can see, but I could be reading it wrong, so I’d be delighted to have my ignorance cured!

        1. JDELH almost every section of the CFN is covered in ATAP. More detail can be found there, though not usually time travel saving projections as that is a level of detail not usually found at network planning level. Well, outside of bullshit guesses, anyway. Additionally each individual project would go through business case process, including that sort of analysis as it depends so much on design detail.

          And furthermore I know the entire economic justification of road building in this country is founded in time travel savings, but this is a highly flawed and dubious metric, in particular they have so often proven to entire worthless, especially for urban motorways as induced traffic quickly kills any such savings in practice. Enjoy the Waterview experience, for example.

          Time travel savings are certainly not the only one of value for transport investment, in our view they are currently over-relied on by our institutions, and often overstated and of dubious value.

          Ironically systems not subject to vehicle congestion are, more likely to post more accurate time savings. Like those featured in the CFN.

        2. How is this for a specific goal: have a congestion-free regional rapid transit network.

          Who cares whether it saves 11 minutes or 15? And who actually thinks they can predict something so specifically?

  7. Initial look at this and its somewhat disappointing that the extant HR line beyond Swanson is completely ignored, instead we see the NW busway converted to LR, both if considered seriously would likely be 30+years in the future.
    Meanwhile a decent Huapai HR dmu service later developed to 2 line emu is a viable option now.

    1. This is a vision for a future network. A DMU shuttle service from Huapai to Swanson/Henderson would be a temporary measure to fill the gap between now and NW light rail being completed to Huapai. I suspect that is why it is not here. I also doubt it would operate at 10 min frequencies, which means it wouldn’t meet the CFN requirements.

        1. That’s where I’d disagree with you. The NW route is much quicker than the circuitous route through Swanson. The advantage Swanson has is the single track already exists so it should be used for shuttles in the interim, but not worth wasting money on double tracking and electrifying, when it would be superceded by the NW light rail route.

          1. I doubt that the cost of double tracking and electrification beyond Swanson would be a waste. With significant growth NW its likely an HR RTN plus a LR route would be well utilised. The HR RTN would be a much easier project, less cost and quicker construction than the projected brand new LR system

          2. The LR system would likely be built to Westgate anyway. So the cost difference is building a new LR line between Westgate and Kumeu vs double tracking and electrifying the longer stretch of track from Swanson to Kumeu. I’m not sure the cost difference would be that big, and the benefits of a more direct route are certainly significant.

            I don’t agree that the population out there would justify two RTN routes to the CBD and the costs of running them both. The beauty is if I’m wrong it would still be possible to upgrade the NAL in the future.

    2. yes, the authors of this disagree with using the extant HR line. We think that area is better served by a new alignment shown on the map, which also serves a range of other important destinations, such as Pt Chev, Lincoln Rd, and Westgate.

  8. What about the Avondale–Southdown Line? Should not we build it as a minimum for freight to bypass Newmarket?

    1. Avondale-Southdown line would depend on what a National Ports Strategy said, so was kinda out of scope due to not having one at current for us to base anything on :/

      1. ASD is basically impossible with Dom Rd-Airport LR as it would take up the land that has been designated for ASD for decades (one of the few pieces of forethought in Auckland’s history) which of course is just another flaw in the LR to airport model. The solution to that is to also build the Manukau Rd LR and then take that through Onehunga. Which would of course waste around $200m of infrastructure installed between the end of Dom Rd and Onehunga (some of which might be able to be re-purposed elsewhere but not on Manukau Rd LR since it would need to be operable on day 1 of the changeover).

          1. The corridor is wide enough for only 2x tracks. So unless you are going to have LR on one track and HR on the other they aren’t going to be able to coexist in the same space. Also you can’t have LR running on the same line as HR freight train if the freight train is going to operate at any time the LR is operating for safety reasons – they just aren’t compatible.
            Of course all of this would depend on KR even allowing AT to use the ASD alignment which is something they have been very protective of in the past (sure their masters in government might have other ideas).

          2. You are assuming that the LRT has to use SH20 AS corridor either at grade or at all it doesn’t technically though it is in SMART

          3. AKLDUDE: a correction – you’re mistaken in thinking that LR and HR freight are not compatible. They certainly are, as a trip to Karlsruhe, for example, will confirm.

  9. Looks quite good.
    I still have my preference for HR to the airport of course. Speaking of HR it looks like there is no plan to have services operating from the West to the South (bypassing the city – would have thought the services through the CRL would have been frequent enough to have allowed this)?
    Not Auckland per se – but a little box at the bottom of the CFN2 about Rail services to Tuakau and Pokeno would be good too (and intercity services to the Tron).

    LR to Orewa, what is the planned routing for it between Silverdale-Red Beach and Orewa? Assuming along HBC Highway? That road is already over capacity for much of the day (and getting worse), it also has steep gradients (even for LR) – overhead on pylons to negate the gradient and space constraints? – Or of course if Penlink was built then that would actually remove a whole lot of traffic off that road.

    What purpose does the ferry service to Takapuna achieve (as much as it would be lovely)?
    Would have thought Auckland-Browns Bay-Gulf Harbour would have been more suitable since Takapuna will already be serviced by it’s own LR line in this plan?

    The Upper Harbour BRT should be extended along Constellation Drive down into Mairangi Bay or Browns Bay.

    Otherwise well done!

    1. 1. Sure always going to be debate over Airport.
      2. Not sure if best way to use network with simpler fares and high frequencies transfers are kinda a feature not bug of metro network. Also cross town rapid bus from New Lynn technically bypasses City.
      3. Potentially though though alignment would need to be studied on deeper level.
      4. It was in AT’s Ferry Plan, is mentioned in full report would require business case to be done.
      5. Possibly though remember will be FTN/CTN LOS Bus Services to transfer onto I would hope in the timeframe we would also see more FTN LOS bus routes as well.

        1. I was actually wondering whether the Westage to Constellation line could extend south-east along East Boast Bays road to Takapuna to cover that off.

    2. People always seem to see the ferry as a way to get coastal suburbs to the city centre but, IMHO, the Takapuna stop would be about getting people from Gulf Harbour and Browns Bay to Takapuna or the city centre, rather than Takapuna to the city centre.

      Takapuna could also be used as a base to get to Rangitoto/Mototapu/Waiheke, rather than using the Devonport wharf 5km down a peninsula.

      1. Yeah because the probably 90%+ people driving along that road during rush hour aren’t going to want to take a route that saves them 10+ minutes/several km/petrol and are all just going to stick with the old road that can’t serve local businesses because it’s at a standstill? – good one!
        Sure overall it might induce *some* additional traffic however now that there are reasonable ferry services and the new bus network plus NEX this is very unlikely. People will just have shorter journeys (which are still very long by Auckland standards about equivalent to Pukekohe to CBD). Of course buses, cyclists and pedestrians won’t want to take an easier short cut over a bridge that will be quite scenic to boot.

    1. Possible not, reason is due to huge distance needed to be covered may need to express Southern Trains through a little. However Penrose will still have great frequency.

    2. true, but you can only fool people some of the time. Those new network maps in the emus look nice. Overheard passengers ask a TM if the train to North Shore left from Britomart, after they studied that map.

  10. Great work.

    I like the structure of the network in the south/east: The combination of BRT connecting Howick — Manukau — Airport along with the two crosstowns from Howick and Flatbush to Pt Chev and New Lynn respectively meet the demand for subregional travel while also connecting with the RTN at key interchanges like Otahuhu, Penrose, Onehunga, Ellerslie, New Lynn, and Pt Chev.

    Incidentally, the Pt Chev station really highlights the benefit of planning for connections: This station would effectively allow people to travel from between large parts of west and east Auckland with one change, where the latter occurs outside of the city centre. Auckland needs to plan for such connections so as to free up the city centre services to carry people who are actually travelling to the city centre.

    We’ve made good progress on this front with the likes of Panmure and Otahuhu, but the west is a glaring gap in terms of interchanges: We will likely need to plan for decent interchanges at Westgate, Lincoln Rd, Te Atatu, andf Pt Chevalier.

      1. It makes you claw your eyes out that something similar was not incorporated into the Westgate area given how much development has happened there (and will still happen in the next five years).

        1. I agree — although Westgate TC is so shit that we’ll probably be knocking it down in 10-20 years and building something proper.

  11. I think that the important thing for me is that the CFN v2 recognises that a network is exactly that – a Network. The difference between what AT have now (a radial model, everything focused on getting in to the heart of AKL Downtown CBD) and what you have proposed (mainly non-radial, quite a lot of inter-connections), is that it gives a chance to prove wrong those nay-sayers who keep insisting that Auckland can only work with cars (I was one of them, before CFN).

    Of course the car is King if there is no alternative – but build an alternative, and the cars can be dropped in numbers. Never dropped altogether – but the 45,000 folk in inner city AKL can then happily roll without a car, as will many others in the outer suburbs.

    The second half of page 44 sums it up perfectly. Miffy, take note.

    Great going ! (Now, that’s another catchy name for a blog!)

  12. This looks promising. We have visited loads of cities where you wouldn’t even think of using a car because the public transport network is so efficient. I’m interested to know whether there are local cross-town plans that would help link where we live in Grey Lynn with Ponsonby, Westmere, St Lukes because it makes no sense for us to live this centrally and for these journeys not to be super easy on public transport. Likewise, we would like to see a hub from which we could travel home from the city. It is currently very easy to get into the city, but there is no central place that provides a reliable service for the return home. One other trouble spot that doesn’t seem to be adequately addressed here is Devonport. This is already badly affected by the bottleneck and further housing intensification is made possible under the unitary plan. Yet this future travel plan indicates very limited attempts to address the public transport deficit.

    1. Thanks for the feedback. My comments:
      — In terms of western central suburbs, I feel like the largest possible RTN gap is Great North Rd. The need for crosstown connections would seem to be met by frequent buses no?
      — Provided AT get their act together and UoA is not allowed to be dorks, then the PT hub you are talking about will be on Wellesley Street. Imagine a bus only street here with lots of supporting passenger information (possibly including ticket/information booths etc).
      — Devonport is served by a frequent ferry to the city and frequent buses north. I think thats sufficient PT given the relatively small size of its population and modest levels of intensification? And the fact it becomes an island in a few decades time due to sea level rise :).

      1. Yeah, Devonport actually has quite minimal intensification allowed under the Unitary Plan. Maybe things will change in a decade or two if those planning rules change, but for now Devonport has to be a pretty low priority for transport upgrades.

        1. Yeah I think frequent ferries and frequent buses will do the trick (along with the long-promised integrated fares!). The area currently has some of the highest private vehicle usage in Auckland, indicating that there’s definitely a demand for this improvement, but I agree that we can improve PT access here without expensive infrastructure changes.

          Belmont to the north of Devonport is zoned for higher density but then Lake Road is a heck of a bottle-neck to plan around. It would be good to see the proposed network somehow stretch down to Belmont from Takapuna, and also I think we could cover the eastern North Shore better (Milford, Browns Bay etc)

          Heck of a good proposed network though – well done to all involved!

          1. The Takapuna LR line could always turn South after Takapuna and go down to Belmont but it would involve widening Lake Rd in most places (although the actual corridor is wide enough for most of it so minimal property purchases needed).

        2. Unfortunately Devonport is an insular little place home to many well-educated and entitled people with time on their hands, so lots of ranting and raving will happen, This will ensure it is prioritised higher than it should be based on population.

          Lake Road illustrates this nicely. It does get quite busy in the peak periods, but it’s never much of a problem, hardly ever taking more than 10-15 minutes from Devonport to Esmonde Rd and vice versa. But from the amount of wailing you hear you’d think it was the worst road in Auckland.

          1. AKLDUDE – yes, in theory, you could slice off peoples front yards in Lake Road, but it being Devonport, they would rather secede from the rest of New Zealand and become their own republic than allow this to happen (its quite possible – after all, they already have the entire NZ Navy). So, please, don’t even go there.

            They can catch a ferry, that’s enough for them…

          2. I agree Nick, they already have better public transport than a lot of areas that have had huge amounts of growth forced on them with no infrastructure expenditure

          3. The entire ‘rail to the shore’ campaign is an example of this, and disappointing that it’s so front-and-centre for the Greens. Considering most other places have little access to rapid transit and the Shore has had it for years, it’s depressing how this has managed to get itself front and centre, and a big part of how the NW widening happens with no PT enhancements.

          4. @Tess and Buttwizard: The Shore got a busway for part of its length. That. Is. It….
            Everywhere else has rail within 10km except around Botany. They all also have bus lanes in multiple places…aside from the NEX and token around Albany mall I can’t think of any on the Shore.
            I guess the 100,000 or so people that have been added to the Shore in the past decade or so don’t count as huge amounts of growth? On top of that you have the huge growth that has occurred on the Hibiscus Coast (and places like Warkworth) which all adds to the growth on the Shore effectively.

      2. Stuart, crosstown connections need to be smart as well as frequent. At the moment the only bus between the GL shops and Ponsonby comes half hourly from Onehunga and there are plans for it come from St Heliers – either way, of course, it is woefully inefficient in morning traffic. St Lukes, our nearest mall, is two buses that don’t directly connect. The kids can’t get an easy bus to football in Meola Rd or cricket at Cox’s Bay (etc…). In LA, buses have hubs which make connecting across town easy. This bit of Auckland needs work, not just for locals but to help people coming into or across town to make these connections. Buses need to go across and intersect with those radiating out from the centre. A Wellesley St hub would make a huge difference. And Devonport isn’t just about the residents, it attracts huge numbers of daytrippers (like us) and is hellish to get in and out of, making any intensification no matter how small a sorry prospect. Well, maybe this brings me back to the effort of trying to get home from the city – which would make ferrying to Devo an easier prospect.

  13. I like it. Another really important point to make is that this sort of comprehensive PT network is NOT more expensive than the roads currently being built. Waterview was $400M per km. East West Link is up to $300M per km. The Harbour tunnel madness would be close to $1 billion per km. By comparison, recent LRT projects in Australia, including rolling stock and depot, are costing around $60M per km, up to a maximum of $120M per km for the Sydney one. In the past decade cheaper PT technologies have come on the scene (BRT and LRT) while our road projects are getting insanely expensive.

    1. I would rather the money was spent on public transport like this than more roads. Much more environmentally friendly too

  14. Looks good, but Gulf Harbour and destinations in Whangaparaoa are waaaaaay of of real locations, and could be quite confusing for a visitor. If Gulf Harbour was in the correct location, the other intermediate destinations might then be close enough to their real locations, even while spacing them evenly in order to look nice.

    1. I tried to edit my comment but was a bit slow….
      Where Red Beach is shown should be renamed Millwater, Red Beach should be added to the Peninsula line, and Gulf Harbour & the other peninsula locations should be moved closer to where they are actually located (adding Red Beach to peninsula should automatically increase accuracy if there is desire to maintain even spacing).
      This would be providing new transit to the two big developments at Millwater & old golf course in Red Beach.

      1. You are assuming that the LRT would run on the motorway. If it were to run on Hibiscus Coast highway than Red Beach is in exactly the right spot.

          1. I imagine you mean Rosedale?
            There are no defining features near Rosedale and Smales Farm – just in the middle of land. The coast line is clearly indicated on the peninsula so Stanmore Bay, Plaza, and Manly being in the completely wrong spots would be confusing. Imagine if someone compares a normal map to this schematic, they’ll definitely be getting off at the wrong stop.

            And it shows the Gulf Harbour Ferry coming in at Little Manly… I’m not sure how that’s justifiable, when it’s easy to put the location in the correct spot.

            Oh, and Red Beach isn’t in the exact right spot even if it’s running on HBC Hway :-P.. 🙂

          2. I guess it doesn’t really matter since this isn’t going to be used for passengers. Just trying to provide feedback to help fine-tune in order to avoid looking silly in this particular area.
            Really hoping that the overall plan is successful, and thank you to those that worked on this.

          3. “I imagine you mean Rosedale?”

            No, I meant Rosebank, which is in the middle of the sea.

            Also, this is a schematic map. exact geographic accuracy is reduced to significantly simplify the map. Somehow the users of every single metro system on earth manage to use such a map without getting hopelessly lost.

            https://tfl.gov.uk/cdn/static/cms/images/tube-map.gif
            http://parisbytrain.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/paris-metro-map.jpg
            http://transitmap.net/post/43575754014/birman-metro
            http://web.mta.info/maps/images/subway_map_2400x2946opt.jpg

          4. P.S. I completely agree that your critique is accurate; schematic maps do lose some meaning compared to geographically accurate ones.

            But I think that you are unfairly assigning blame to the people who built the map. Using a schematic map is a design choice which inherently faces those drawbacks.

          5. Oh right, I wasn’t looking in that area and wasn’t thinking of Rosebank Road.

            Thanks for the effort of getting the maps, I’ve been to those places, except Russia, so have used those maps as I was finding my way around. These maps actually reinforce my position, as the locations on these maps are quite accurate, not off by so much as to look stupid, especially as the water is also shown as schematic, not an accurate outline as per the CFN2 map is.

            Now that you’ve kindly pointed out Rosebank’s location in the sea – this should be fixed as well. None of those international maps have stations located in the water, as far as I’m aware.

          6. Reinforcing my previous statement that I fully support the intent of the CFN#2. I’m only offering suggestions on tweaks for improving the logic as if it was actually going to be used by people new to the area.

          7. You’ve got a point there now I think about it a bit more…. The shore line is really highly detailed for a schematic map, in a way that clashes with the strongly idealised route lines.

  15. Has there been assessment of currently planned works that will prevent this (lovely) list from ocurring (or being a waste of money should these items comes to pass) and how much time is available to re-evaluate them?

    First thing to mind is the absurd Albany Bus station detour on the Northern Corridor Improvements plan – the BRT detour is bad enough, I can’t imagine LRT doing that loop. It can’t only be me that sees a McClymonts road station being both closer to a) housing b) new office space all along Corinthian and c) the godforsaken mall. Better to build a bus interchange on a new overpass there than the stupid offramp to current station.

  16. The arc from Grafton to Mt Eden stations looks odd – is the existing track there just taken out of service? And does the Central Line share track with the CRL, or have I missed something here?

    1. The central line runs on Queen Street in the CBD. Grafton to Mt Eden section is still used, there are just no trains running directly between; they run Mt Eden to K Road and K Road to Grafton. (Happy to be corrected if I have gotten this wrong)

      1. Which seems daft… Any Western Line traveller heading south will have to travel past Mt Eden to K Road, transfer, and travel back on the same track repeating that part of their journey past Mt Eden to Grafton. (Or travel the long way round through Britomart).
        After spending years doing the dog-leg at Newmarket on the Western Line to the CBD, I hate backtracking so I would find this a very annoying…

        1. With a train every few mins, won’t be a problem (indoor station & all), or just stay on the train as you say. They may have a cross town route West to South at peak but would be less frequent.

          1. +1 the majority of passenger going to Grafton or Newmarket wouldn’t catch a direct train even if it existed.

  17. The objectives of CFN 2.0
    Connecting Aucklanders to major employment and social centre’s, including the city centre, growing metropolitan centres, and the Airport.

    My reaction with the above:

    The first objective is the main objective that all over objectives sit under. This is excellent as our current planning processes through the Auckland Plan, Unitary Plan, and the Regional Land Transport Program are ad-hock given they are City Centre centric and everything radiates out from there. However, as illustrated over the years and as Panuku Development Auckland have picked up with Transform Manukau Auckland develops in a diverse manner set by three distinct sub-regions. Those sub-regions being:
    Isthmus and West Auckland
    North Shore and Rodney
    Southern Auckland including Howick and Pukekohe

    Each sub-region is unique in its residential, employment, economic output and transport patterns all requiring a heterogeneous (rather than homogeneous) approach.
     
    https://voakl.files.wordpress.com/2017/03/step-4-and-5-of-manukau-framework-plan.jpg
    Step 4 and 5 of Manukau Framework Plan
    Source: Panuku Development Auckland
     
    The Congestion Free Network 2.0 strengthens the transit links between the three sub-regions while also strengthening transit within the respective sub-regions as well (the Busway or Airport Light Rail from the Airport to Botany via Puhinui and Manukau is an example of a transit link doing both).

    quote context: http://pllqt.it/OsZUvs

    To me that is the crux of the CFN 2.0. It recognises and allows efficient transit between and within the sub-regions. So it is set up for both cross-city AND localised trips.

    The line that caught my attention was the New Lynn to Flatbush via Otahuhu and Otara Bus Line. Stroke of genius in allowing transit east-to-west (or vice versa) that bypasses the inner Isthmus potentially freeing capacity in that area for those wanting to travel to it rather than through it,

    Well done team – solid effort 🙂

    1. Thanks Ben. I’m a big fan of the other Crosstown too; connecting the NWestern to the Western via Unitec and its development site, then all the way across town to Howick. It connects with all four rail lines, two of them twice.

      In fact if you look hard you could conclude that we have some kind of agenda to improve the educational performance of east Auckland: With this network people there become profoundly well connected to nearly every tertiary institution with high quality one seat rides. Unitec, UoA, AUT, MIT, the Akoranga campus via one transfer, and almost Albany. But then no one is well connected to Albany cos it’s in a terrible location…

  18. I see you have ditched the crosstown trains. I can’t see AT supporting this as it effectively renders the upper platforms redundant, which wouldn’t be a good look.

    1. Jezza we see a high frequency consistent legible pattern working best. West south here can be served by transfer, and further out people will I’m sure prefer to take the direct Crosstown routes. Also I don’t think the section of track will be redundant, it’s very good for resilience; like if the CRL was out of action for any reason, but also for special event trains, and overlay, etc…

    2. do you mean Mt Eden platforms become redundant?

      From what I understand this CFN is about designing the best possible rapid transit network for Auckland in the future. If that means some existing/planned infrastructure becomes redundant, then so be it.

      In which case the designers rightly have not givena coin toss about the Mt Eden platforms.

      It would indeed be stupid to run an inferior network (costing millions of dollars per year) simply to make use of existing infrastructure. That’s the definition of sunk cost fallacy.

      1. Sorry, yes I meant the Mt Eden platforms. I agree it would be good to see the crosstown trains gone.

        However, remember the fuss over the air-conditioning noise on the new trains when they were first rolled out. I can see a similar negative focus on the redundant Mt Eden platforms when the CRL is opened, when really the focus should be on opening of the CRL.

  19. I really think that the NW line should go up Albany Highway all the way to Albany. Gives a far better link to Albany, Massey University, and the Upper Harbour line.

  20. Great design. Starting to think I should have bought that poster!

    I really like that Limited Stops east west route. Would that be in additional to or replacing regular services on Balmoral road?

  21. Is a PT only bridge across the water from Glendowie over to Bucklands Beach or from Waiotaiki Bay over to Half Moon Bay a feasible option in future?
    Say from Riddell Rd over to Bucklands Beach Rd, or Taniwha St over to Pigeon Mountain Rd.
    Ideally the Glendowie-Bucklands Beach as it could run all the way down Bucklands Beach Rd towards Highland Park and connect up with the rest of AMETI at Aviemore/Pakuranga Rd corner. It would help to alleviate future bottlenecking along AMETI.

    And yes I imagine it would cost squillions and NIMBYism would be rife along those Eastern suburbs.

    1. Ex-Glendowie-ite here. It’s a lot further than you think, sadly, and far too long for a walkway. The shallow water makes a water link like a ferry impossible. The area really is an island when it comes to PT and I suspect the dire state of the bus service out there for decades is a big contributor to the NIMBYism you’ll find. It has improved but that is a very recent development.

    2. That’s a wide bit of water, similar to the Harbour Bridge if not wider, I don’t think the population out there is anything like that of the North Shore.

      1. Hmm feedback noted.
        How about from West Tamaki Rd across to Ara-Tai Rd at Half Moon Bay?

        I get the distance is similar to harbour bridge, however it’s also a lot more shallow compared to Waitemata harbour.
        Could it be possible to have the bridge sit quite a low to the water along the muddy flats at either end of those roads but raised in the middle to allow boats to pass under?
        Just looking at google maps with the satellite view, the theoretical bridge is approx. twice the distance as Waipuna bridge.

    3. When biking home from the city to howick it does annoy me that need to do about 10kms of riding to cover the 1km of real distance from pt England to Half Moon bay.

      1. It’s also an alternative route to alleviate future AMETI traffic.
        AMETI alone won’t be able to cope with all the Eastern suburb congestion.
        It could be a pedestrian/bike/bus/LRT only bridge, no private motor vehicles and exception for emergency vehicles.

        A similar style bridge to the old fishing bridge that sat out at Onehunga/Mangere Bridge before it started sinking. A lower bridge would probably have less visual impact.

  22. Looks good. Two rapid transit corridors across the Waitemata – looks good as long as it includes full bus priority for the BRT over the bridge.

    1. How do you mean? As Stu says there is a lot of room at the motorway.

      I am impressed by the boldness of recommending 6 lanes of general traffic and 2 rapid transit lines over the harbour vs the current govt thinking of 14 lanes of traffic plus “future proofed” rapid transit.

      1. If I read correctly, it proposes a new crossing for light rail that runs from Wynyard and meets a terminal at Onewa on the existing toll plaza which is at the bottom of the harbour bridge. I’m all for switching from car space to PT space but having a new crossing join here doesn’t leave much space for everything?

    2. Onewa is easy – just make the T3 a bus lane and enforce it properly. The top end of Glenfield road is 2 lanes each way so bus priority is easy there. The hard bit of the route is from Highbury up to the Glenfield shops where the road is narrow in places, especially past the Pupuke Rd junction where Birkenhead Ave. becomes Glenfield Road.

      1. You will need to do a bit more than just turn the T3 lanes into bus lanes, we are talling about BRT. I would have thought using the Northern side of Onewa for 2 way BRT would be the best option. Agreed Pupuke to Eskdale is a bit of a pinch point. Not sure what GA had assumed here, but I noticed they assumed $72m for Bus from Howick to Glenfield, so must have a fairly cost effective solution in mind.

  23. The HR network could be extended to far better effect.
    NW rail line from near Mt Eden station along the Western motorway eventually extending all the way to Kumeu or following SH18 to Hobsonville possibly to Albany.
    Airport line from Otahuhu by extending the NAL south to Otahuhu (adding two mains from the current Westfeild junction past the Otahuhu station), with stations at Favona, Mangere town centre, airport oaks and the airport terminal.
    NS line coming in beside Brtiomart utilising the already built NS platforms under Quay St.
    Eastern line connecting Panmure with the current dead end Manukau station via Botany.

    Line running
    NS to Manukau via Botany, then Manukau to terminate on one of the spare platforms at Britomart via the current eastern line.
    Papakura via Grafton to Britomart then via Newmarket to the airport.
    Western (Swanson) via CRL then Parnell and Grafton (not Newmarket) to the NW line.
    Onehunga either uses the other spare Britomart platform or most likely is relegated to a shuttle to/from a proper interchange station at Penrose.

    There is also now no need for the dreaded cross town trains.

      1. Whats your point? No one has ever said this can be fixed cheaply and I didn’t see a price put on the wish list of coloured lines over Auckland.

        Also this is not instead of LR, LR has its place, Dominion rd, Mt Roskill to New Lynn etc.

        1. From the post:

          “The CFN takes a different approach. We outline a clear way forward to make ATAP’s “strategic public transport network” happen much faster. All up, government costings show the CFN to cost around $13-14 billion – barely one-sixth of ATAP’s total 30-year transport programme and therefore clearly affordable.”

          So, you’re incorrect: A price has been put on this “wish-list”

          1. Sorry Stuart you are correct but if that is for everything either Nick has extremely over exaggerated the cost of the HR I suggested or the $13-14B is a bit under exaggeration. I’m picking Nick has over exaggerated as seems to do that every time HR is mentioned.

        2. Ted read the document, it has all the costings listed in the back including the breakdown of light rail and heavy rail.
          They’re actually talking about the same cost, six billion on heavy rail and six billion on light rail.

          But light rail gets you three whole lines, heavy rail gets you the CRL and a bunch of upgrades. Maybe heavy rail is actually expensive? The CRL is costing almost a billion dollars a kilometre. Thats fine for a link that supercharges the whole existing network but a hell of a price for building new lines.

          1. Nick it would be still costing a billion dollars a km to build a comparable section of LR.
            LR is a good alternative to buses in the central area, it does not compare at all to HR for longer distances like the Shore, NW, SE or SW suburbs.
            LR savings are by street running that makes the service much slower and by being able to make slightly tighter curves that while is good in tighter inner suburbs it is of no particular advantage over long straight routes like the shore, NW line, Airport (via Otahuhu it is basically a straight line) and the SE suburbs.

          2. Well according to Auckland Transport light rail cost about a billion dollars for 9km from Wynyard to Mount Roskill, so you’ll excuse me if I trust their costings over yours.
            I don’t get why you are talking about on street for long distances, who is proposing that? Reading the post on this plan shows they are talking about offline LRT that does 110km/h top speed.

            And while you are at it you might want to fact check the supposed speed of heavy rail in the middle of the network. It manages about 30km/h average. I’m sure LRT on Queen St can better that.

          3. Yes Nick but HR will only get quicker when the infrastructure and issues around door speeds are addressed, anything running on Queen st will be limited to a max of 50kph and for most of Queen st probably 30kph so there is no way LRVs travelling on Queen st will be averaging speeds better than current HR.

  24. Given I think we are talking about min 10 min frequencies for being on the CFN map, would it be better to NOT double track Onehunga (500M + even more if station isn’t moved further East as was planned to get HR to the airport if via this way), and do a LRT to Manukau Rd to Onehunga? I know there will be cross town bus services but seems a big gap given it’s potential density on the PAUP. Once we are at this level of RTN Auckland wide, surely we would have LRT down past Newmarket or BRT down Manukau Rd? I guess it’s not such an elegant line as per the purple F line, but 5 min freq say in the inner city from say Britomart or even the University area splitting to 10 min freq to Botany at Newmarket. Anyway my 2c worth. ps How does the Mount Wellington connection work without major detour, or are we just talking Ellerslie-Panmure Highway area?

    1. The Ellerslie-Panmure Highway has a lot of capacity for most of it’s length, given it used to handle the Eastern suburbs traffic before the Waipuna Bridge and South-Eastern Highway were built. It could quite easily handle bus lanes, with a bit of widening between Mt Wellington Hwy and Lunn Ave.

        1. Apologies – I thought your last comment ‘Anyway my 2c worth. ps How does the Mount Wellington connection work without major detour, or are we just talking Ellerslie-Panmure Highway area?’ was referring to the purple BRT route between Panmure and Ellerslie.

          1. No problem, was thinking Mt Wellington would of meant central area, as in Penrose Rd/Mt Wellington Highway intersection, but I wouldn’t think the route would go there, just threw me off for a bit).

  25. Fantastic, forward thinking (that should have happened decades ago) wish you were all running the country. Thanks for your hard work.

  26. Great work!
    I like the elegant simplicity (or Legibility, to use the parlance) of the Central line running from Orewa down through to the Airport. Just to nit pick however, I think you could add a stop between Balmoral and Mt Roskill – that’s a very long stretch of Dominion Rd.

    I know that you envision this LR line having priority, and limited stops, to enable faster throughput, but it seems to me that that speed through this section (Dom Rd) may in fact be hard to implement in practice with mixed traffic, and in fact detrimental to serving this crowded central triangle area that’s already limited in handy PT options (except crowded buses).

    Overall though, love it!

      1. Ok, so do you envision physical barriers? I’m worried a large minority of drivers will take pleasure in disregarding that separation – if they can get away with it…

        And still think it’d be good to add one more (at least) stop along Dom Rd.

        But yeah, very minor nit-picks…

      2. Melbourne’s trams do have it sorted with ugly but fairly practical and safe tram stops in very confined spaces…but by gosh, I really think for Dominion Rd to work, you’d want a blanket 30 or 40 km/ph car speed limit (with speed cameras) all the way down each side of the tram corridor. The alternative is lots of speed humps wherever the tram stops are. And yeah, on main arterials where trams and cars do mix directly in each other’s lanes in Melbourne, it is not especially effective for cars or trams.

        I have to say though, can’t wait for Auckland to get its very own trams!

        1. I would have thought they would be like the new (not legacy) stops in Melbourne. Stations style platforms in the street with a signal crossing for pedestrians.

  27. So the authors of CFN2 have basically no interest in further expansion of the HR network in Auckland. Once CRL is open thats it finished apart from some minor performace tuning regarding signalling. Campaign for Mr Roskill spur has died. No interest now in HR to NS and HR to airport.
    It appears that we can expect RTN focus from Greater Auckland to concentrate on pushing for the two proposed LR lines and more busways.
    Pity.

    1. Our view is that the current (post CRL) rail network will be very busy serving the extant lines, more and more freight, and a revival of intercity services. We envisage the CRL running very frequent highly legible Metro pattern services out to its current stations (+ some new southern ones). Britomart’s centre platforms serving new intercity passenger lines to Ham/Tau and expanded ones further south.

      And to do that well into the future will require 3rd and 4th mains on the NMIT, a 3rd on the plateau of the Eastern line, plus signalling, junction, and level crossing improvements.

      It is possible to keep extending the current network with more lines, however the cost of doing so for the coverage gained, and the impact on the uses outlined above (i.e. capacity constraints), compared to adding a new separate surface railway means it’s not really a hard decision to make. By adding a new dedicated passenger railway that can use street RoWs at constricted but vital points like Queen St for some of its route, means that AKL can get new coverage and capacity in a realistic timeframe and at a realistic cost. And can maximise value from the legacy railway, and prevent the city from drowning in buses.

      This plan does not in any way turn its back on the current rail network, but rather sees value in complementing it with another one. There are clear resilience (a problem on one system doesn’t impact the other) and efficiency advantages to this too. As well as the ability to free the new lines from heritage gauge and platform height conditions. Among other things this delivers a much wider suppler market and access to ‘off-the-shelf’ purchasing.

      It is far from unusual for cities to have many different types of systems all working together. Sydney is adding not only new Light Rail at the moment but also a new separate Metro rail system that is incomparable with the current passenger trains. So what. There is no reason to keep trying to extend one system when there are advantages in adding new ones.

      1. What you guys are proposing with LR appears quite similar to the system in San Diego. I used this a few years ago and it worked very well.

        The only risk I see is Dominion Rd not being as fast as hoped, however as it will be built first (or will it?) we will have a better idea of these impacts before other lines are constructed.

        I notice you are now advocating for LR out to Orewa, which you have previously said is better suited to HR.

  28. Possibly out of scope a bit but I think there needs to be a commuter train from Hamilton stopping each stop up until Pukekohe then an express stopping at main interchanges to Briomart or possibly continuing onto somewhere else if not wanting a dead end loop. Something similar to the Wairarapa Line in Wellington, where it is more expensive to get on once you hit Pukekohe and the seats are a bit more comfy for longer travel time. So much development is happening south of Pukekohe and traffic from Drury isn’t great. Would involve an extra party to the table being Waikato Council so probably in the even harder basket, but there are a lot of people that already commute from this area.

    1. +1

      Hamilton (Ruakura, Claudelands, city centre, Forrest Lake, Te Rapa), Ngaruawahia, Huntly, Huntly North, Pokeno, Pukekohe, Puhinui, Britomart.

    1. Beautifully. There will be two ‘spare’ terminating platforms at Britomart post CRL. And with planned and budgeted upgrades to the rail network we envisiage an hourly Akl-Ham-Tau service. Plus tourist services further south, and ski season specials (assuming snow is still a thing).

      And by building a whole new passenger only railway that is separate from the current network (Light Rail) there will be still be space for these services. If we just keep trying to expand our current system there would be no hope of adding these, and rail freight growth would be compromised.

        1. I’d presume we would now want to electrify the line all the way down country or use hybrid diesel/electric trains to do this given, or do we turn the fans on again in Britomart? What is the estimated cost of electrifying to Hamilton?

          1. Electrifying to Te Rapa is an option but running hybrid diesel/electrics is probably the more obvious choice, especially if we want the same trains to head on to TAU…

          2. I haven’t been in Britomart since electrification. How’s the experience on the platform minus those diesel fumes?

  29. Great work!

    [Minor point: Rosebank appears to be in the middle of the harbour (I know it’s to simplify the diagram, but a slight kink south between Te Atatu and Pt Chev to keep it on land in the vicinity of where it will be might be an idea for any subsequent revision?)]

  30. Here is my brief critique based on reading the full case.

    1. I admire the authors’ ambition. Changing a city is a worthwhile thing, and any sort of revolutionary concepts stir my heartstrings at least.
    2. Don’t let the naysayers say it’s too hard. Governments are the most powerful thing on earth and if they truly want to do something they can do it.

    However
    3. A lot of this appears to be a set of solutions looking for a problem to solve. What’s immediately apparent is that for all of the detail about routes and costs, there’s not a lot of discussion about “why?” or “so what?” A good business case (and this is a business case, regardless of title) begins with user needs/requirements and works from there. Roads, trains, buses, and ferries are *means* not *ends*
    4. As such, I believe the implicit user requirement here could be
    a) To improve average transit times in Auckland in the period 2017-2043 or
    b) To ensure average transit times in Auckland do not worsen to 2043
    5. This then lends itself to a number of options. Option Zero could either be doing nothing, or doing what is already planned i.e. what is in the current Auckland Plan. We could then compare this to CFN2 either en masse or by module/phase.

    I have to say my gut says this is the right approach BUT compare this document to that produced by AT, which shows different future travel times for various funding models i.e. shows the relationship between dollars and benefits. Even some guesses would be good enough. There’s enough modelling in existing AT documents for you to extrapolate your own estimates of what CFN2 might do.

    1. I think you are missing one critical point here. These are all ATAP projects. They are already AT/NZTA plans, already have business cases, are already on the 30 year programme for funding. All the guys have done is rearrange the programme to bring forward the transit and push back the motorways, and shown it as one network.

      If you compare the CFN to the current plans you’ll get the same outcomes, because they are the same plans. If the travel time savings are so important to you (why?) then read the corresponding business case on the AT website. The need to justify rapid transit and build business cases is gone, that has been done already.

          1. Buses in mixed traffic = BRT? That’s not a definition I have ever seen. Is GA using this definition of BRT in its report?

  31. What will the impact of autonomous connected cars be? Columbia University estimate that lane capacity will improve 273% as a result. Estimates are that self drive cars will be prevalent by the time we break ground on the City to Airport light rail line.

    1. There are plenty of people skeptical about those sorts of claims, I’ve heard another study put the increase at 15%.

      Even if it is 273%, thats still no that much. An arterial lane would be lucky to exceeed 800 vehicles per hour. 273% of that is about 2000 an hour.

      Meanwhile a lane of rail can move five times that easily. And autonomous rail already does ten times that per lane. Not a game changer.

  32. It is interesting to look at the asymmetry of the multitude of ferries in the Waitemata compared to their complete absence in the Manukau. I realise that there isn’t the population and historical usage on the Manukau shores, but it seems as though a potential transport resource is going to waste, especially when Onehunga becomes a transport centre for the north Manukau shoreline.

    1. What service on the Manukau do propose would work? From where to where? And have you seen how completely NZTA plan to further cut Onehunga wharf from everywhere and indeed Onehunga in general off from every inch of its coast?

  33. Anyone know why the Southern Line was planned to double-back on itself by linking through to the Eastern Line (the two share four stations near the end of the Eastern Line)?

    Surely the plan should try to minimize the number of transfers, yet no one would conceivably want to travel all the length of the Southern Line from Homai or further South and through the CBD to the Eastern Line stops – they’d transfer at one of the four shared stations (Puhinui – Otahuhu).

    In that case, an alternative is to join the Southern Line to the Western Line via Parnell and the CBD, and then join the Onehunga Line to the Eastern Line on the Newmarket->Grafton->Karangahape route. That would avoid any of the lines going through more than one station at once and would leave plenty of use-cases to go from one end of the line to the other.

    1. The alternative proposal would see Western-Onehunga travelers making 1 transfer instead of 0, and but Western-Southern journeys go from 1 transfer to 0. Seems like all other combinations would keep the same number of transfers. Given the size of the Western and Southern Lines i imagine there’s quite a lot of travelers affected relative to the smaller Onehunga line, so the change would be a net win.

    2. They did consider that early on, I believe the main concern was the resulting Swanson to Pukekohe line not only be very long in distance (the longest possible), it would take in the windiest line with the most level crossings too (long in time too). The concern was reliability if there was two hours between timing points.

      There are also some other considerations, like entering the city via Parnell and Britomart is actually the slowest and least direct way: via Grafton and K Road is about the same time to Britomart as going via Parnell, but takes in Grafton, K Road and Aotea on the the way. The issue is the Parnell tunnel, bridges and the Quay Park curve are all quite slow. It makes sense to have the longest and busiest line take the best route into town, and to leave the second best to the short and less busy Onehunga line.

      1. Nick while I agree with the reasoning for not linking Pukekohe to Swanson that decision was also made when the Onehunga line was going to be upgraded and extended, something that looks like it won’t happen now. Onehunga will remain a 3 car only 2TPH line that doesn’t make a good buddy for the busy western line. Buddying the Onehunga and western lines will become a nightmare timetable by only having a 3 car on the 2TPH that go to Onehunga and having the other four 6 cars either having to be wipped of (out of service) down past Grafton until its time to run it back into Newmarket to start its next Swanson run or the timetable magician will need to have every non Onehunga train timetabled to leave Newmarket as so as it arrives back to Swanson while being balanced with the 3 cars that go to Onehunga (adding another 3 car can cause its own problems like where does it wait) The ideal buddy for the western line is a new NW line but that like HR to the airport is something you are against. CRL 2 is not required to build HR lines to the NW and NS, it is only required if the NS line must go to Aotea and not Britomart.

        1. This would require sending all trains from the Northwest the long way around the city centre before getting to Britomart, one of the things we’re building the CRL specifically to avoid. Who would really want to wait to loop the wrong way around the city (and would require skipping Newmarket unless you plan on retaining the awful end change).

        2. It also gives you only 4tph ‘spare’ for the northwestern line. Not amazing for something that will cost several billion dollars.

          I’m not sure they’ll leave Onehunga as 3-car, won’t cost much to lengthen the platforms to 6 car lengths. A few million if they need to buy land, but not much in the big scheme of things.

  34. I’m interested to know what you propose will become of the 3 dead-end platforms at Britomart post-CRL as the map currently shows no rail services terminating at Britomart?

    1. AT already plan on reducing Britomart to four platforms by removing the current platform 3 and shifting platforms 2 & 4 closer to give greater space for the CRL platforms. Those extra platforms would presumably be used for special services but we’d also like to see them ultimately used for intercity services

  35. As with the majority of people this appears – certainly on the face of it – to be an extremely positive and exciting suggestion. One aspect that I haven’t seen mentioned – and my apologies if I have missed it in the very many comments – concerns capacity at park and ride stations. These need to be properly sized and integrated in to the local road network to prevent bottlenecks at a local level occurring otherwise the positive image of a fast, efficient PT network is undone by commuter experience.

  36. While I applaud the CFN, (mainly for engaging people in a conversation about what Auckland’s needs are), it irks me that the map shows Mt Eden Railway station to the west of the View and Valley Road light Rail stops when it’s obviously to the east.
    I can’t focus on the good parts of the network when all I see is a glaring mistake.
    Surely those not familiar with the city will get confused by this when trying to navigate?
    Modfied in CFN v3.0 ?

    1. It’s a schematic diagram, not a map. Part of the point of a diagram is to be simple and clear, sometimes that comes at the expense of accuracy. If you want geographic accuracy, look at an actual map. If you want to understand how the lines relate in a network in one glance, look at the diagram.

      If that irks you I’d suggest you don’t ever look at the London Tube map, it’s positively chockers with things that aren’t geographically accurate.

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