In just over a week, work will start on transforming Auckland’s Downtown area with a series of projects due to be completed by the America’s Cup in 2021. There’s a lot going on and here are some of the key projects being delivered.

Quay Street utilities

The first project to kick things off is to relocate all of the underground services. This work is due to start on 27 December and run through to April 2019. This will see Quay St narrowed down to a single lane each way in places and the rest of the works will see it stay that way. The cycleway will remain open during that time but will be moved over to accommodate the works.

It is going to be fascinating to see what impact this has on traffic in the city. Like with the CRL works on Albert St, my guess is people will adapt and divers will find alternative routes or change their travel – which is exactly what AT are encouraging people to do, using the phrase “change your commute, change your route” in this video about the works.

Potentially throwing a spanner in the works, yesterday it was revealed a group of residents on Princes Wharf want the works stopped

Legal action is being planned by a powerful group of waterfront residents and businesses to stop Auckland Transport’s plans to narrow Quay St from four lanes to two and initial enabling works due to start next week.

David Ramsay, chairman of the Shed 23 Princes Wharf residents’ committee, said a group would go to the High Court challenging what was expected to be a non-notified consent to allow the initial works to be carried out.

Quay St Seawall Strengthening

Kicking off once the utilities are moved, and critical to all of the projects, is the seismic strengthening of the Quay St seawall. There are four sections that will be completed by mid-2020 between Princes Wharf and Marsden Wharf.

Quay St Upgrade

Quay St is getting a major overhaul and as mentioned above, will be narrowed to two lanes in places, such as between Lower Albert St and Commerce St. The road narrowing will mean there’s more space for people and plants along one of the busiest parts of the city centre. This is one of the longest of the projects with work starting early next year and continuing till late 2020. AT say:

A revitalised waterfront street will be created, with wider footpaths and easier navigation, designed for a 30km/h speed, with street furniture, trees, and opportunities for business and events.

We will achieve this by:

  • Reducing four lanes of traffic to two, from Lower Albert Street to Commerce Street.
  • Dedicated bus lanes between Lower Albert Street and Lower Hobson Street.
  • Wider footpaths.
  • Increasing space for events and trading opportunities.
  • A cycleway separated from traffic.
  • Simplifying navigation between buses, ferries and trains.
  • Enhancing the natural environment.

Below are a couple of impressions of what it will look like.

And some cross-sections for each of these.

Downtown Public Space

One of most prominent of the changes will be the new Downtown public space in the ferry basin. This is in part to replace QE2 Square and if it comes out looking like these images, then it have been worth it.

Construction is due to start in late 2019 and be completed in late 2020. They say that after America’s Cup “it will be extended further towards Queens Wharf“. Here’s another shot from the ferry terminal looking back at the new space.

Ferry Basin Redevelopment

While on the topic of ferries, the redevelopment of the ferry terminal also represents one of my biggest concerns. The plan is to add six more berths down the side of Queens Wharf to replace some of the ones being lost for the works above, with more to come post-2021. My concern is that by the time it’s all completed, some ferry users are going to have to walk up to 300m (or more) down Queens Wharf just to get to/from their ferry which makes catching a ferry that much harder, especially for those with mobility issues.

One other change is that the HOP gates will be moved to the entrances of the pontoons to open up the space in the ferry terminal for public access.

This will take place between mid and late 2019.

Downtown Bus Interchanges

As part of the Commercial Bay project, a laneway will be build east-west through the site from Britomart to a bus interchange on Lower Albert St, effectively continuing the Te Ara Tahuhu walkway that runs through the Britomart precinct. That will make it easier to transfer between trains and buses such as the NX1. Lower Albert St will be upgraded which will improve the experience for bus user. From what I understand, the NX1 and Birkenhead buses will continue to use the western (northbound) side of the street and buses from the Northwest will loop around Sturdee St and Quay St and use the eastern (southbound) side. Buses from the Northwest used to terminated nearby but were pulled back to the southern edge of the city due to the CRL works.

Construction will begine late next year and continue till late 2020. I do hope they give people a formal street level, mid-block crossing option for people. Having come through laneway, I can see people wanting to cross the road immediately instead of up and over on the over-bridge or having to walk to the Customs or Quay St intersection, especially if they’re trying to get a bus. I can see a lot of people just trying to dash across.

A second bus interchange for buses from the South and East is currently proposed for Quay St alongside Britomart. AT say they’re still investigating this option. I continue to hope they’re able to find another option because this one is very poor across a range of metrics.

Mooring Dolphin

Last on the list is the Mooring dolphin which are structures that will be built off the end of Queens Wharf so the cruise ships that are currently too large can berth there. Work will start on this early next year and continue until early 2020.

There’s certainly a lot going on and most of these will significantly improve Auckland’s downtown area. This will also tie into the work being delivered around Britomart, such as the new public space on Queen St between Customs and Quay streets.

AT is currently holding a consultation on the works, with feedback closing on Friday, should you wish to submit – something perhaps more important now that this new group are opposing the changes.

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  1. Where ever those stops end up, it needs to be a proper stop, and not some benches in a dark and poorly lit part of the city.

    Overall these changes look good, I’m just a little concerned the designs still seem to focused on the handful of days a year when Auckland is either inundated with rain or 27 degrees and blisteringly hot. The shade from the trees is nice but it’s going to take years for them to get to that stage and won’t be any use when it’s wet. Is the ferry terminal still usable if everyone is huddled inside because they don’t want to wait on unsheltered docks?

    It should be a requirement that some of these renders have to show what it will be like during a spring thunderstorm or summer squall, instead of just an impossibly pleasant middle-ground that Auckland just doesn’t do very often 😛

    1. +1 for some reason AT seems unable to design a shelter that actually protects from the elements and that doesn’t cost about 5x what it should! Also everything doesn’t need to be glass (which acts like a glasshouse and is an easy/expensive target for vandals).

  2. I very much hope this legal action goes nowhere. If it delays or adds significant costs to this project then AT and AC will become a lot more cautious about implementing central city projects that reallocate road space away from private vehicles. Which means further delaying the already glacial timelines to make High St and Queen St car-free, turn Victoria St into a linear park etc. All the changes necessary to bring about Access for Everyone are put at risk.

    Auckland has already waited too long for these projects. Further delays just mean more deaths and serious injuries for people using active modes, more premature deaths from air pollution and inactivity, more degradation of the local environment and more contribution to climate change.

    1. From the Herald article:

      “We found out about this only late last week and a lobby group is being formed to dispute the change.”

      This group must be the least observant people on the planet! There have been have been prominant preliminary investigative works going on down Quay St for weeks, including signage explaining what they were doing.

      As for the claim that hundreds of businesses will be affected when most of those will be shut for the duration of the works…

      1. It is hard to have much sympathy for the entitled Princes Wharf NIMBY’s, who for a posh bunch seem not only remarkably unaware of what is going on but also illiterate insofar as they seem to . However, you can’t help but think that AT and the council have brought this on themselves with the the catastrophic impact the CRL work has had on retailers in lower Albert Street.

        1. Its a common Council/AT tactic to split a major work up into small pieces -like they have done here (i) seawall (ii) undergrounding services etc and say that the individual parts have a less than minor effect so they can proceed with out (pre) notification to neighbours AND without advising them they can object.
          In reality Quay St will be under continuous changes for the next 2 years or so.
          This only a few years after the previous roading changes were made

        2. @Duker – you’re logic requires making a complete hash of what the RMA actually requires. You’ll find much of what Council is proposing doesn’t even need resource consent (it is permitted as of right) so questions of effects are irrelevant. Temporary disruptions from construction activities are not reasons to prevent the finished product either as it would be impossible to build anything, anywhere, ever.

        3. Good thing I can read – the Quay Street Resource Consents related to removing trees to facilitate some of the changes to the carriageway. As set out in the consent documentation the majority of the works that the consent related to were permitted activities not requiring consent.

      2. They are being untruthful on two fronts:
        1. They definitely have been informed, contacts for the Downtown Programme were passed on to them and the work has been very widely publicised within residents in the city. They are either oblivious or were not paying attention, that is no one’s fault but their own (but as noted, they definitely were informed directly)
        2. They are claiming that resource consent is not in place for the work being done – not true, the resource consent for the seawall work/services is in place and that is the current work. The Consultation for the Quay Street/Ferry Basin changes only just completed and RC will happen next year, prior to work commencing.

      3. Have these moaners ever walked along Quay St there quote of hundreds of business is way misleading there would only be around 50 max unless they are running something from their apartments that the council doesn’t know about .
        And it sounds like they don’t want the great unwashed moving around in this area if they don’t like it then move to somewhere else .

        1. Reminds me of this classic exchange:

          Mr Prosser: But, Mr Dent, the plans have been available in the local planning office for the last nine months.
          Arthur: Oh yes, well as soon as I heard I went straight round to see them, yesterday afternoon. You hadn’t exactly gone out of your way to call attention to them had you? I mean like actually telling anybody or anything.
          Mr Prosser: But the plans were on display…
          Arthur: On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them.
          Mr Prosser: That’s the display department.
          Arthur: With a torch.
          Mr Prosser: The lights had probably gone out.
          Arthur: So had the stairs.
          Mr Prosser: But look, you found the notice, didn’t you?
          Arthur: Yes yes I did. It was on display at the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying beware of the leopard.

          …and I hope there as successful in their attempt to block progress as Arthur Dent was.

        2. “Andy White” We also could look at this clip from the movie ;- The Hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy destruction of earth where they had the same problem

          “People of Earth, your attention, please. This is Prostetnic Vogon Jeltz of the Galactic Hyperspace Planning Council. As you will no doubt be aware, the plans for development of the outlying regions of the Galaxy require the building of a hyperspatial express route through your star system. And regrettably, your planet is one of those scheduled for demolition. The process will take slightly less than two of your Earth minutes. Thank you.
          There’s no point in acting surprised about it. All the planning charts and demolition orders have been on display at your local planning department in Alpha Centauri for 50 of your Earth years, so you’ve had plenty of time to lodge any formal complaint and it’s far too late to start making a fuss about it now. … What do you mean you’ve never been to Alpha Centauri? Oh, for heaven’s sake, mankind, it’s only four light years away, you know. I’m sorry, but if you can’t be bothered to take an interest in local affairs, that’s your own lookout. Energize the demolition beams.

          I don’t know, apathetic bloody planet, I’ve no sympathy at all.”

          “There was a terrible ghastly silence.
          There was a terrible ghastly noise.
          There was a terrible ghastly silence.”

          GA had a previous post talking about what they AT were going to do along the bottom of Auckland city so don’t these moaners read anything that’s not online i.e Council Website you can find it all there :-
          Dated July 18th 2018

        3. David: What Andy is referencing is actually The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy book (which was based on the radio show of the same name) and occurs earlier the same day as the bit you’re referencing from the movie based on that book.

        4. I added the 2nd part as a follow on/up to show what might happen 1 day as AT and council might do the same .
          With the Hitchhikers guide I use to have all the books but I have both the movie and the BBC Tv series and many many years ago I use to listen to it on 1ZB late at night on the radio

    1. Yes, but if you call it a Dolphin it is much more acceptable to the public. At least I assume that is why it is called a Dolphin as it certainly doesn’t bear any resemblance to one.

      1. Just a useless but interesting aside – the use of the word “dolphin” in the sense of describing some kind of pile driving anchor in a watery context is a very ancient one. The ancient Greeks had a naval weapon that they optimistically would throw (presumably form some sort of great height) onto an enemy galley with the intention of putting a hole right through the bottom. This weapon was called a “dolphin.” Just BTW, in 2014 the famous Antikythera wreck actually yielded up such a weapon, the first ever discovered.

    2. It is. We are losing more and more of our harbour to industrialisation and commercialisation. The harbour is Auckland’s most important public asset; it needs to be respected far more than it is and turned into a conservation area.

    3. Enough about Dolphins – what’s with the two giant Jellyfish floating in the picture? (just under the heading Downtown Public Space). What the heck are they doing there? Or is it one giant con-joined amoeba ? Are we meant to swim out to them? Is it a floating hot tub? Is it a target to see how far you can throw a traffic cone ? Urban Aqua Parkour ? Come on Isthmush – tell us!

  3. That cycleway needs more separation from the footpath/plaza. Will be a nightmare trying to thread through dozy pedestrians.

    1. Agreed … The pedestrian area needs physical separation from speeding self-entitled cyclists. Maybe including barrier arms to prevent red light running cycles. 🙂

        1. Is it the one that has to meet frontal impact standards with specific standards surrounding pedestrian impacts?

        2. Those standards must be incredibly poor looking at some of the SUVs with bullbars I see driving around.

        3. “According to internet lore, somewhere online exists an universe where an impact from a bicycle is more dangerous than an impact from a car.”.

          Those bullbars alone look like they weigh more than my bicycle.

        1. Certainly on Quay Street where almost every evening pedestrians have to dodge around cars that have decided red lights and road rules don’t apply to them.

          But yeah, the cyclists are the entitled ones.

  4. AT lose the battle here with their encouragement to use PT. On one hand they are doing their utmost to repel cars from the CBD by car bans, parking price rises, speed restrictions and lane closures but in the flip side with their public transport alternative they come up with the supremely lame tart up at the bottom of Albert St and Quay St and call it a “Bus interchange”

    Its the same shitty area they are already using with a lack of shelter and room so whats really charged aside from putting buses back on the other side of Albert St, like they were anyway pre building construction?

    Giving people decent alternatives to cars cuts to the heart of their apparent objectives but this half arsed attempt fails miserably.

    1. Such negativity. The Lower Albert St stop will be much easier to access than currently but walking straight out of Britomart through the walkway and into your bus with roof shelter for a large part of it. A mere ~130 m from the front of the Britomart building to the Albert St path on the east side at least.

      1. Wow, you can interchange from what bus service to what bus service? It’s the beginning and end of the NEX and Glenfield and Beachhaven runs like we get now.

        AT have a very rich cash stream from fuel tax. This meagre budget bus stop thing interchanges stuff all.

        About time that AT had a real interchange for many services and demonstrate that the money they get for nothing is going to a worthy cause.

      2. It is about 500m between the stops for North Shore buses to the stops for the buses turning in that balloon loop. And that assumes you can actually cross Lower Albert Street.

  5. All looks very impressive. I really can’t see why local residents and businesses wouldn’t want this! No sorry I prefer to have a four lane highway between me and the sea… Boomers I’m certain.

    1. Princess Wharf is just parking and car manoeuvring space on the ground. You wouldn’t go in and out on foot because there is literally no room to do so.

      Fits in nicely with that 4 lane highway.

    2. “Boomers I’m certain.”
      Mods: this sort of ‘comment’ should be deleted. It is derogatory name calling against a whole demographic (they’re all the same). You wouldn’t allow it if it were women or Samoans.
      BTW, the commenter is “certain” on absolutely no evidence whatsoever – just some hate filled prejudice.
      Slap a label on a group and it is then fine to fling pejoratives and worse their way. We’ve all seen this in action before.

      1. I agree there is no place for those sort of value judgements here. the commenter should have said “Boomers or some other arseholes”. That would have been more complete.

  6. I heard that the bus loop isn’t going to work and support for it has weakened internally.

    The ‘dolphins’ are a crock and will ruin the ‘public’ Queens Wuarf to facilitate boats that “won’t come to NZ otherwise”, ignoring the fact that the boats go lots of places that don’t have them, including every other port in New Zealand, who they will continue to visit after Auckland Council is duped into putting these in.

    City Centre residents definitely want the upgraded Quay Street, ignore the few NIMBYS. The CCRG has tried a lot to make progress on a lot of issues, taking positive stances and a progressive view of the city, and the media ignores it generally. As soon as a bunch of whingers threatens legal action to stop something objectively good, suddenly they are a “powerful group” and get a ton of media coverage.

  7. There are some improvements:

    More seating in the Downtown Public Space:
    A lot of people will like to eat their lunch in the public space. However the downtown public space photo doesn’t seem have enough seating.

    Forcing people to cross over bridge will make the transfer slow and painful.
    We don’t want to repeat that stupid Sylvia park train station design, where people are forced to walk up and walk down.

        1. Crossings can impede the flow of traffic, in this case buses and you are still walking out on to a road. No road crossing is better.

        2. Generally accepted pedestrian-friendly practice is to avoid requiring people to change levels if possible, particularly avoiding subways, which can have many issues of their own. Even if there is a subway or bridge people will tend to cross on the level if possible, which can mean putting in barriers such as fences to block pedestrian desire lines. And for accessibility any significant change of level for pedestrians has to have long ramps or lifts/escalators, all of which add cost and complexity.

          I hope that AT has more sense than to obstruct pedestrian desire lines, clutter urban spaces with fences, or make things more expensive and complex than they need to be. In a low-speed well-planned environment people and buses can interact pretty well (even better if it’s light rail) as many European examples confirm.

        3. Mike – agree. At Panmure they didn’t like people getting off the front of the bus and walking straight across the busway instead of walking a few more metres to the pedestrian crossing.

          The solution was to put in a temporary barrier, many canny passengers now just get out the back door and walk round the back of the bus to avoid the fences. You wont stop pedestrians taking the shortest route they can find.

      1. There use to be a subway under Lower Queen St between Britomart and the Downtown shopping centre and more people walked across the road than used the Subway

        1. The subway led to a set of stairs as opposed to an escalator to street level inside CPO. If the final exit went somewhere useful such as inside the shopping mall and both footpaths either side Queen St south of Costoms St it would have been far more utilised.
          The subway was a classic example of budget cutting resulting in a facility that has no realistic function. Sadly a far too common situation in NZ.

        2. The way it was , you came up the escalators from the platforms , walked through the subway and then you had a choice of either stairs or a lift to get to the buses or street
          The worst and most unused subway is on Symonds St at the university where most of the students just cross the road and not use their subway

  8. These council owned departments like to waste money as the berths for the feries nearest Princes wharf have recently been renewed and upgraded , and now they are going to trash them were do they think the money comes from? It sue is not theii bloated salary , if came from their pocke they wouldn’t be so wasteful
    And that area would be the last place I would go swimming with all the pollution that comes of the roads right now on a still ay the water is cover with film of oil all the time

    And is the article fro the herald this morning that Matt L was taking about

  9. Echoing other comments, it doesn’t look to me as if PT and its users are getting proper consideration in these plans. There will be four separate spread out interchange locations – for ferries, trains, buses to the west/north and buses to the east – some way apart, and transfers won’t be that simple, easy or obvious. As pointed out it will be a long walk to the ferries, and also between buses.

  10. I agree with making the area more accessible and attractive. Given that 150,000 passengers arrive in Auckland via cruise every year, making a good first impression is important.

    However, there’s a lot more to be done. The CRL was supposed to be finished by 2021, which would have coincided with the America’s Cup. But down, it’s schedule to be done by 2023. In actually fact, we know with NZ speeds, it will be done by 2028.

    We also need light rail and more frequent buses to the city.

    1. That’s another good point; there is no factoring in here for the tram lines that the Council voted to retain; surely if this is to be extended to Quay Street, it should be part of this transformation project? Otherwise why the hell did we retain it?

      I mean I want it to get added; but I don’t want it to see Quay St dug up multiple times, nor report after study after report and a project delivered in 2040 that we could possibly squeeze in now.

      1. Wynyard tram is not going to be extended to Queen St. Plan is for LRT to extend to Wynyard via Customs St / Fanshawe St.

        1. That was the plan before the heritage tram was retained. I would not be surprised if there is more discussion about this in the coming months. It’s basically a waste of time unless it does connect to Quay St.

        2. I can’t see a light rail project that will bring rapid transit to the SW and NW of Auckland a waste of time just because it doesn’t go down Quay St.

        3. The Wynyard line as a waste of time; not the broader LRT plans. A lot of the discussions around the Wynyard line seemed to involve a broader discussion about how it could be made better. Now that we are retaining it, it makes sense for those to play out.

          The historic tram has nothing to do with the LRT plans, but we’ve still retained it. We might as well make it worth using.

        4. Unless AT put HOP readers at tram stations, clear the roads of cars for quick trips and build an interchange at Fanshawe, it’s a silly heritage tram. All of these things can more easily be done by the new bus lines that run through this location now.

    2. Generally agree, although I would say CRL was never going to be finished in 2021, it was just an unfunded plan of Auckland Council’s.

    1. The Seabus thing looks interesting – I assume they board from both sides at once. That would mean berths and boats all standardised to each other, which means a real big spend up front.

      The long walk to the end of the wharf problem could be mitigated with airport style horizontal travelators if need be.

    2. Yes agreed. Frustrated they are not looking at that kind of infrastructure. The boarding times are way too slow right now and that design won’t improve them.

        1. “jezza” the Qickcat and Superflight on the Waiheke run both have double level boarding/exiting at both ends of the run

        2. QC an SF no longer have two level boarding at Auckland. Apparently the new ramp won’t fit. These two vessels are used sparingly anyway.

      1. Moving the tag posts to the pontoon ramp entries will further slow boarding as the ability to tag on before the ferry arrives will be lost. There will be no space to sit and wait after tagging on and the ramps will need to be clear for arriving passengers.
        The whole idea of allowing free public access to what should be a passenger only area looks like just another example of impractical design trying to multipurpose an area to save money at the cost of the main function of the facility.

  11. I have just looked at the council’s blurb in support of the mooring dolphin expecting a case to be made to justify any need to further restrict navigation in this confined section of the harbour. Their case says it is required to cater for the growing number and size of cruise ships yet clearly the provision of the dolphin makes absolutely no difference to the number of ships that can be accommodated. It gives details of the Oasis of the Seas a now regular visitor that moors midstream. This may be an inconvenience to the cruise line and may result in the loss of some provisioning business but what is the actual cost to Auckland? The passengers still get ashore and spend. These mega ships are only a small portion of the total cruising market.
    It is time the Authorities stopped taking the public for dummies by undertaking sham consultations. Place the business cases in front of the public or else, diservably loose the public’s respect.

  12. Thank god someone has decided to challenge this project, which has been rammed through by AT without any public consultation and without going through the proper approval channels. AT have tried to weasel out of being accountable to the public (as per usual) by relying on the totally spurious claim that the road changes are “minor in nature”. Minor?? Cutting Auckland’s busiest east-west traffic channel in half?

    All I’m seeing here is some pretty artist impressions with absolutely no serious rationale for the changes or study on the impact to the entire CBD of these changes. While a few people get the luxury of waltzing around pedestrianised boardwalks of an afternoon or morning most of us are trying to get on with our busy lives, and that involves driving places.

    AT thinks that it’s just fine to put hundreds of thousands of Aucklanders in gridlock while they continue to close down routes and make the lives of the vast majority of commuters a misery. This plan is a nice-to-have as part of a general transport strategy – without the rest, it’s just a really dumb idea. I would oppose it – if I was given the opportunity.

    1. What kind of study do you want? Lets say they did a study and the outcome was that it will really badly impact the entire CBD’s traffic flow: does that mean it shouldn’t be done? How do you value the improvements it will make to the people that don’t drive a car through there?

    2. Haha – the cry of the of the entitled motorist who is suddenly seeing a tiny part of his privilege removed.

      Get used to it. Cars are being de-prioritised in the CBD.

      If you don’t like it, stick to the suburbs.

    3. I agree that the alternative route, Customs St, should be set up free flowing to cope with the loss of Quay St. Not much chance of that though!

        1. If by ‘bypass’ you meant the Strand and Grafton Gully, it’s frequently a twenty minute trip from Quay Street before you can even get on the motorway.

          It’s a valid concern and I don’t blame people for asking the question, given that it strangles access to two motorways in three directions.

        2. Yes, that’s the one I was talking about. If it is that congested then there are clearly too many people trying to drive around the most densely built, populated and pedestrianised part of the country in cars.

          No one should expect easy car travel through the CBD.

        3. That traffic is mostly going somewhere else, or else it would be going along Beach Road. They’re not going through the CBD at all.

    4. The majority of commuters into the city are not driving these days. Plus this is likely the busiest public transport area in the country. A ferry terminal, train station, and bus hub, plus busy cycle lanes and footpaths. I work on Quay st and its generally busier with people than cars most of the time. It should be a proper boulevard for people not traffic.

      Why not even make Quay st a through route only for buses? Car traffic can go via Customs only. That could be an interesting experiment.

    5. Quay St currently handles 24,000vpd (vehicles per day). That’s comparable to some other two lane roads around the city, like Dominion Rd. Cut down to two lanes it might back up a bit at peak times but that’s no different to every other street in Auckland. And that’s before you factor in people changing their habits to suit new traffic patterns…

  13. It baffles me that AT can design and proceed with schemes like this, but can’t handle the day to day
    problems like graffiti on the rail corridor, or people who insist on smoking on rail stations or at bus stops.

    No names on bronze plates for simple things like these, I guess.

    1. We don’t live in a police state, AT can’t have someone monitoring each rail station or bus stop. As for removing graffiti.

    2. The graffiti went ballistic after AT stopped using whoever the contractor was to clean it up for reasons not fully explained and the rail corridor became a toilet pretty much after that like the good old days. I see signals and other railway signage vandalized too.

      Smoking in public places however is a harder one to crack, as said we are not a Police State.

    3. “Grumpysmurf:” what is more dangerous and deadly a closed room of smokers or a closed room of buses with their engines running so who will die 1st ? Even waiting at a bus shelter the buses are more deadly than smokers .

      1. Is smoking allowed in railway stations in Singapore, or Japan ? I don’t know, I have never
        been there.

        Are those countries police states ?

        It happened to me again this morning, at 10.30 am. I was sitting at Otahuhu station and
        some moron sat down about 2 metres away and lit up. No security anywhere, of course.

  14. I am surprised, consultation submissions have not even closed and it seems like this is a “done deal”.

    Bureaucracy overtaking democracy – Exactly why Aucklanders hate AT.

    1. The resource consent for the seawall work/service alignment is in place and that is the current work happening.

      The Consultation for the Quay Street/Ferry Basin changes only just completed and RC will happen next year, prior to that work commencing. The seawall upgrade needs to happen regardless of anything else (or would you prefer that quay street fall into the ocean? I’m sure that will have some sort of impact on traffic)

      Willful ignorance is not a good reason to ‘hate’ an organisation.

  15. Was there not supposed to be a tunnel connecting Britomart to the ferry building, deleted under the typically budget model Auckland is built on?

    Now would be a good time to build it

    1. Yes, and back to queen street also. However that was some pretty old school thinking about grade separating pedestrians from buses and cars.

      In the current plan lower queen street is fully pedestrianised, so there is no real need for a pedestrian tunnel under a pedestrian plaza.

      1. Thinking safety and convenience for pedestrians if which I am regularly one. And if you have to cross any street it is risky.

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