It’s been a while since our last update on the progress of New Zealand’s biggest singe transport project, the City Rail Link. Here are a couple of quick updates on progress so far, or lack of it in some cases.
Inside the former Chief Post Office (CPO), they’ve been busy transferring the building over to a supportive frame so that they can then start excavation for the tunnels.
Out the front of the CPO, piling work has just been completed so that the tunnels can be dug
City Rail Link Limited (CRLL) have just released some videos of what the spaces around Britomart will look like when complete in 2020. The first one looks at the space on Lower Queen St out the front of the CPO
The second video shows the back of the CPO along with the two side streets, Tyler and Galway. The biggest change will be the removal of the temporary structure that the station is currently accessed through. You may also notice that there used to be a small carpark off Commerce St, that won’t be returning and so the area will become a new plaza. The two streets either side of the station will be blocked off to prevent vehicle access to the square and will be made much more pedestrian friendly
The tunnels through the Commercial Bay site continue to progress, and progressively disappear under the development
While excavation of the trench on Albert St continues at the northern end, the tunnels are starting to be formed at the southern end and the first section is expected to be finished by the end of June.
It remains a shame that all the space above the actual tunnels will be filled in again. Remember, in the image below they’re below the bottom rung of steel crossbeams.
Work is now underway to realign a stormwater pipe at Mt Eden. One of the most visible aspects of this so far has been the demolition of an apartment building on Mt Eden Rd. This project is due to be completed in around a year.
You may recall back in February (20th to be exact), CRLL announced they would be delaying the tender following the withdrawal of Fletchers from the process. They were one of the two shortlisted bidders.
The release of tender documents for the City Rail Link tunnels and stations will be delayed by up to three months following the withdrawal of a preferred bidder from the process.
CRL chief executive Chris Meale says while the withdrawal is disappointing it won’t prevent progress on the CRL tender and discussions have already started with another prospective bidder.
It is too early to tell if the three-month delay will roll on into the current project completion date of early 2024.
Well the three months has come and gone so I thought I’d ask CRLL for an update. This is the response I had
We are still in negotiations and although a decision is expected soon, I can’t give you a specific date.
Importantly CRLL remains focussed on its stated opening date of March 2024.
I don’t find that response filling me with a ton of confidence. I certainly hope that I’m wrong though.
On a separate note, we have heard that CRLL have been looking at the options future proofing for 9-car trains and to build the Beresford Square entrance. The primary issue of course is the cost of doing so.