Last week Auckland Transport and Kiwirail announced that from next September the line between Papakura and Pukekohe would be shut down while Kiwirail upgrade and electrify the line.

KiwiRail and Auckland Transport (AT) are suspending the passenger train service that connects Papakura and Pukekohe from September 2022 until the second half of 2024, to allow for the work needed to extend the electric train service to Pukekohe.

The announcement comes as work picks up to ready Auckland’s rail network for the opening of the City Rail Link (CRL) in late 2024. The service will be replaced with buses and then restart with the electric trains that are currently used on the remainder of Auckland’s metro network.

KiwiRail’s Chief Operating Officer, Todd Moyle, says Aucklanders are now seeing a major step change in the amount work being done to improve the city’s rail network over the next three years.

“The City Rail Link is going to be a game-changer for Auckland, allowing more frequent and more convenient commuter services to get people around the city. But to get to that point there is a vast amount to be done over the next few years.

“We are working closely with Auckland Transport to develop a multi-year work schedule across the network that will give the best outcome for rail users and allows us to get the work done safely and to schedule. It will create some disruption for commuters and neighbours, but we will make sure Aucklanders are informed about what will be happening and when.”

“This includes the significant work that needs to be carried out on the 19km section of line between Papakura and Pukekohe until 2025. This includes installing the electrification masts and wires, modernising the existing track infrastructure ready for CRL operations, redeveloping Pukekohe station and building new stations at Drury and Paerata.”

“Most of this work will require at least one track, and often two, to be closed at multiple locations along the route. Without suspending the commuter service, we would not be able to get the work done safely on schedule for the opening of the CRL.”

To enable the works to be delivered safely and on schedule, Auckland Transport has agreed to replace the ageing Papakura – Pukekohe diesel shuttle service train with buses from September 2022, until electric units can run on that stretch of track.


“The alternative would see rail passengers travelling between Papakura and Pukekohe facing many years of disrupted journeys and a delayed completion date.

“The electrification between Papakura and Pukekohe is expected to be completed by the second half of 2024, and in early 2025 new stations at Drury Central and Paerata should be open to the public. The new stations will provide convenient access for locals and commuters in the south will no longer need to change trains at Papakura.”

It’s great that electrification is happening and they say they’re not just electrifying the line but also rebuilding the track formation and drainage but even so, two years seems a long time for ~19km. Presumably freight trains will continue to run and the Te Huia train between Auckland and Hamilton will too.

In addition to the wires, a third substation is being built near Drury to help power the network and support the additional trains that will be running on it.

At Pukekohe the station is being redeveloped to handle six car trains, and is being futureproofed to make the platforms able to be extended to handle nine-car trains in the future. A new stabling yard is also being built. The images below come from the consent application.

They also noted that in early 2025 the new stations at Drury Central and Paerata will open. Those are currently going through a fast-track consent process and despite all the talk of making these new areas high-quality, compact, sustainable communities, they sure look like they’re being planned for auto-dependency as I feared earlier this year.

Drury Central

The Drury-Opaheke Structure Plan of 2019 showed a concept of a station opening out to a plaza surrounded by multi-storey buildings.

What we’re getting though looks quite different.

On the plus side, the station will have two platforms initially but is being future proofed for four tracks/platforms and there is a decent amount of space being set aside for bike parking, which when fully developed will have space for around 500 bikes.

The big concern here is the huge park and ride and stormwater pond that helps to cut the station off from any immediate housing. Typically 800m is considered as a good walking catchment (8-10 minutes for most people) but with this design around a quarter of that is going to be lost just on getting to parking. The only potential benefit is that it could be redeveloped in the future but until we see that happening at other P&R sites, I won’t be holding my breath.

Perhaps it’s just the level of detail for these drawings but there doesn’t even seem to be any pedestrian crossings planned.

The staging plan is shown below with Stage 1 being what is delivered as NZ Upgrade Programme.

Here’s a cross section of the station once fully developed.

The roads accessing the station will be wider than many of the arterials on the isthmus


Down the tracks at Paerata it’s a near identical story though in this case the Park and Ride is on the opposite side to where most of the development is happening and that means a new road and bridge over the rail corridor is needed.

That new road connects to SH22 and has a similar cross section to the one shown above. The station itself also has a near identical cross section.

Why didn’t they put the station closer to the road bridge so they can have public access straight down off that instead of having to loop around the stormwater pond. They should also include a path from the road along the western side of the rail corridor to the station.

The bridge is being designed to be wide enough for four tracks and also for an active mode corridor on the eastern side.

The staging is also near identical to Drury Central with the attributes the same.

There is expected to be some development on the Eastern side of the tracks, and zoning for up to 6 storeys will be a requirement out of the government’s housing rules, but most of the planned development is focused to the Northwest – the new road to access the station is the southernmost black line.

It seems it’s not just us that suffers with these kinds of designs, such as  this tweet I saw recently from Scotland

Drury West

The proposed Drury West station hasn’t been included in the application even though it is meant to be being built as part of the NZ Upgrade Programme though we can likely expect it to be very similar based on what we’re seeing above.

There has been a bit of noise about it recently though with it appearing that the developer of the nearby Auranga development is running a campaign to get the station moved closer to their development. Through an apparent residents group they say the current proposed location is “yet another example of poor investment, poor planning” and that it is in the middle of nowhere which will make it harder to access by foot and bike thereby encourage more driving and emissions. They’ve even quoted us and our previous comments about the location of the Parnell Station.

But this is a different situation to Parnell. While Auranga is currently under development, the council’s ‘Future Urban Zone’ is a lot larger and the proposed location is more in the middle of the future area.

One of the big problems with their preferred location, the dotted box below from the Drury-Opaheke Structure Plan (above), is it leaves a lot of the potential catchment undevelopable as it’s in the middle of a flood plain. As such the current proposed location, just south of the proposed extension of Jesmond Rd (the dotted line), has a higher catchment of developable land. The government’s housing changes will also make a difference here as wherever the station goes there’ll need to be significant zoning allowed.

Like with Paerata though, I wonder if there’s value in shifting the station slightly to align with the proposed extension of Jesmond Rd and allow access from it.

Given the need to get these stations built by 2025, I would assume we’ll be hearing more on Drury west soon.

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  1. Why is the shuttle being axed if the line is still open for Te Huia and freight? Can they not keep 1 track open or are there no crossovers?

    1. I think stopping passenger services is unacceptable if they’re not working 24/7.
      Stopping passenger services 2 years for 19km is ridiculous, its only 26m per day. If they’re going to stop passenger services they need to establish multiple work fronts and get it done in a few months tops.
      We didn’t have a 2 year closure to get the rest of the Auckland network electrified.

      1. My guess is that they don’t want a repeat of what has happened since Auckland was electrified.

        They slapped up poles and wires all good for AKL electrification, but changed little to the track, so after a decade of heavy use and no big rolling upgrade / maintenance program, it fell to pieces. Sounds like here they’re doing the whole 9 yards on day one, replacing the track bed and everything.

        1. So how can they keep freights running and let Te Huia through at peak periods but not the diesel shuttle?

        2. No idea, I was just saying why this is entirely different to the Auckland electrification project.

          I suggest, maybe, they can shift all the freight to night / early morning / evening, get Te Huia services through and have the whole main part of the day as a block of line. Running all day Diesel shuttles wouldn’t be compatible with that. But that doesn’t explain why there couldn’t be a commuter shuttle, mixed in in the morning with Te Huia. Maybe they think that would be too confusing? people would show up midday, make plans on the shuttle and not realize its only a morning / evening thing.

        3. Probably because there are only a few freight trains with hours in between plus a handful of Te Huias vs 2 or 3 shuttles per hour in each direction all day. Also the ADL dmus are life expired.

        4. Love the armchair experts who are not actually familiar with any of the details and would rather spend another $100mill or so and have the project take twice as long (finishing after CRL rather than around the same time) rather than just catch the bus for a while. Maybe you’d be pleased to know there are currently about 10 work fronts but a lot of detailed work to be done in each area.

        5. @Mr & Ms Brown
          It would be really good if kiwirail or AT or whatever organization is in the know, released significantly more details about their goings on. It doesn’t have to be fluffy quotes and edited videos. Put up some of the planning PDF’s, reports detailing what’s been done etc.

          Kiwirail’s projects and trackwork have massive long term impacts on the function of the city, its not a freight company in Auckland any more. When there is an information vacuum there is no option for interested people but to speculate.
          The public want to know the tradeoffs made. Does the press release mention extra cost if they tried to run shuttle services, the exact work that needs to be done, the quality of the finished track, future upgradeability? not that I can find.

        6. I suggest that you ask them for whatever information you would like to review. I don’t work for them so cannot release anything.

        7. Don’t get me wrong, I do that sometimes, but I find it extremely hard to get information out of almost any OIA recipient.
          Even you ask extremely short, simple questions apparently it takes 3 weeks + to get an answer:
          (note they have updated the project page after I sent that, so someone internally has read this email and actioned it)

          I cant ask for all the design documents for xyz project’, I’ve tried, while I genuinely do want to sift through folders of documents, apparently that would be too all encompassing and they don’t want to give me all that.
          I’ve tried asking for internal business case reports, if they do those, got nothing.

          If you have suggestions then I would really like to know.
          There has to be a document that they make internally, to give internal decision makers an overview of what this will do for the rail network long term. Like a business case or report summarizing the project.
          Impossible to know what its called, or what the format is, or what to ask for, without experience.

          If I ask for, “Any plans or considerations for the future potential 4 tracking for this corridor, and what further work would be needed”, then I can almost guarantee I’ll get a response from them with some irrelevant quotes from the latest press release, and a line saying “we have considered potential expansion for the tracks in the future”.
          With zero details.

        8. @jack sorry i dont have any recommendations as that is not my speciality.
          We have 400 people working at Christmas so just beware that we are working hard.

        9. I suspect there are a number of valid reasons why the completely replace the service with buses while they upgrade. One being that it would mean saving on maintenance of the aging diesel train units.

        10. Grant it also gives the track crew more time and space to do the works without having to stop every 20mins as the Shuttle passes .

          And AT should upgrade the DMU’s so they can be used on the Swanson to Helensville run

    2. If enough Person can comment on the Te Huia FBPage and other websites they may get the service to stop at Pukekohue going both ways .

  2. Sorry what on earth happened last year reguarding electrification? Nothing? Kiwirail saying investments are now being made to the rail system, is comment with some baggage.

    Park and rides are such terrible design. They encourage people to do stupider and stupider commutes and they encourage the people inside the walking catchments, to drive the station.

    1. Vinegar, exactly right. AT repeat the same mistakes over and over and, unsurprisingly, obtain the same result.
      While Matt offers 800m as the walk up most people are prepared to do, I suggest this is more likely to be acceptable for a commute. If you are using the train for another purpose you are less inclined to walk for up to 10 minutes, travel for 10 minutes perhaps, and then walk another 10 minutes.
      Albany is a classic example of station that doesn’t work for other than car trips. There is the busiest mall on the Shore close by, but very few access it on foot or public transport.

      1. Yea I would agree with that. I live 700 meters walk from a rail station. On my morning walk to that station there are 3 different people that drive that distance. (The land required to service this is so silly). They all work in the city, no way would they be using rail to go to the shops or something. Auckland’s rail system is (amazingly) a system that caters to more than just commuters.

      1. “Why have a building that can be a home to a more than a thousand people, when that could be like 50 free to use car parks?”The decision makers apparently.

    2. If they have to have park and ride, why not make one of the stations have it instead of both? Or maybe put a park and ride only station in the middle of nowhere.

      1. Yes, reminding me of the idea once to have a park and ride station, surrounded by car dealerships and automotive industries. Make it a one stop shop for the sector. Let the sector and the drivers pay for the station and for the costs it imposes on the network, instead of having other stations ruined by the park and ride and associated traffic movements.

  3. So at all of these new stations buses have to leave their routes, go down culdesacs, turn around, and park at stations to drop off pick up users? Best practice is to through-route bus services directly, just pausing on their way east-west to communities either side of the rapid transit line. Preferably on the road over bridge which connects directly to platforms.

    This is better for users, more direct, and way better for efficient operations of public services. These designs are very very rural, completely unlike the story we were sold of these being at the heart of coming town centres. Yes that will be their condition initially, but i see no flexibility in these designs to adapt them to a future urban condition.

  4. This is a ‘space constrained, plonk down a roof and a separator all call it job done’ job in a brand new suburb.

    The concept for the centre drawing is exactly what Auckland needs. So why, when given a clean slate, are we rebuilding something that looks like Fruitvale Road with a road over it? They don’t need to be huge complex beats like the inner-Auckland stations, so why not be a little more creative?

  5. Okay rail replacement buses for 2 years. So we will have 5 stations when the project is finished if you count Papakura and Pukekohe. The rail replacement buses must stop at a site close to where these 5 stations will be. In fact there should be even more stops than just the rail replacement bus stops. On day one of rail operation the rail replacement buses will morph into rail feeder buses. Get people into the habit now if we wait till 2025 when the project is finished they will have already developed a driving habit . These will be real nice suburbs to live in however the occupants need every encouragement to use public transport and not just clog up the Southern motorway even more.

    1. The concept drawing for Drury Central looks a bit……optimistic. Is there any other place like that in Auckland, centered around an RTN stop, aside from Britomart? It would even dwarf Newmarket.

      1. Papakura has four platforms (platform 4 is inset from platform 3) and park and rides on both sides of the track. Pre-pandemic, the surrounding roads would be chocka by 8am, the park and rides earlier than that.

        1. In pre-covid times, the Papakura park-and-ride (or temporary carpark as it’s been designated for more than 15 years) is full by about 7am. This never used to be the case. What changed? The separate diesel service to Pukekohe. I personally know several people who drive to Papakura now, no doubt that will increase once the service stops altogether.

  6. My guess is Auckland Transport will make the parking free so it will be full by 6.30am meaning it doesn’t reduce morning peak traffic at all.

      1. a voice from the future.
        Nope. Parking strategy review got kicked back for consultation.

  7. The comparison in the drawings showing 500 bike parks and 500 car parks is telling in my book. Coupled to that is a massive storm water runoff area to cope with carpark. It seems planners don’t want to risk ridicule, (station without carpark), yet this is actually what they should be planning for. A much reduced carpark with parking charges would encourage true mode shift. I see some sort of real commuter hell, 1.5/2hr each way combined commutes,good luck with that life. If that is to be your lot ,at least a bike ride/walk as part of it,can be a great stress reliever,presuming of course that the infrastructure is up to it.

  8. This planning is extreme: Extremely out of date, grossly inadequate for tackling our high transport emissions and fundamentally missing the biggest opportunities for safety transformation.

    1. The contrast between the structure plan and AT’s design is scandalous! Planning for another generation of auto-dependency. How can we make sure that these carparks never get built? Particularly Drury Central…

      1. How do you expect people to get to the train station in what is a largely rural area (and will be for decades, despite all the poor quality housing developments underway)?

  9. This is what happens when you let people who drive everywhere design railways. They design the car park first then with the station around it.

    Pareata is especially bad here. The road is literally only there to access the carpark, yet it’s part of the stage 1 development. Stage 1 should be building the train station and some way for buses to drop passengers off on the western side of the railway tracks. The park and ride can be stage 2, built whenever a private developer is willing to pay for it.

      1. Yep, the stations are appropriately scaled and detailed for suburban town centre type stations. The park and rides and access roads are completely inappropriate for the context.

  10. This reminds me of a recently constructed station in the Netherlands. It truly is another level over what we can possibly hope AT to produce here.

    Of course this is a bigger station than what we need for around Drury etc, but one could imagine a smaller version, and we wouldn’t need the station to be elevated. But still.

    1. That Dutch train station is so much better it’s not funny. Granted it’s bigger but the 5:1 ratio of bike parks to car parks is for more appropriate for a town centre, as is their placement… 3,000 bike parks right under the train station, and 600 car parks a short distance away (and I guess not free).

      We have to move on from car dependency…

  11. It would have being easier to just go with the original plan and have installed some batteries in some of thev EMU, s to allow running to Pukekohe. But then I hadn’t envisaged the frequency and three intermediate stations and the share scale of new homes that the government and developers are wanting to build.

  12. Has Te Huia upgraded its timetable for more frequent services? Maybe peak commuters will be pushed to that?

    I see yesterday they announced it will now run through to the Strand but hoped there are a few more servives during the day.

  13. The train station should be the centerpiece of a walkable community, why ruin it by putting a gigantic free carpark in front? The people who came up with this have no imagination.

    1. Agree 100%. It’s not even as though they were constrained in what was possible, given the greenfield sites.

      But how does this even happen? Did no-one challenge the design, at any point in the process? Or was this genuinely the best option? In which case what were the assessment criteria? How does providing 100s of free car parks (rather than prioritising TOD, cycling, walking) support climate change imperatives, remembering Auckland Council’s declaration of a climate emergency and the goal it set out (in the public interest) in Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri of a 64% reduction in emissions from transport by 2030, compared to 2016? It’s not even remotely credible.

      1. I’m not defending the actions of what has been designed, but I imagine it goes similar to this;

        They’re designing a station in a greenfields location, by default people will drive to that station on day one, as there isn’t the housing already there to provide the walkable catchment, that will come later. So providing the park n ride, they hope that at least in the beginning, people from the existing areas will use the station, by way of park n ride.

        And as for Matt’s quote – “doesn’t even seem to be any pedestrian crossings planned.”
        Don’t hold your breath, in Takanini, there’s a lovely sign in the park and ride to advise pedestrians that cars have the right of way … and that was only built a year or so ago.

  14. Park and ride – so wrong.
    My railway station is about a kilometer from where I live and the walk is great, nice to have a little bit of exercise. The best part is not worrying about where to park the car.

    1. Some people don’t even live 1 km away from these park n ride/train stations at all, some live 2 – 3 km from the station which is part of point why we have park n ride. After work people need to go grocery, electrical appliance shopping and bank since may be unable to do during their spare time.

        1. Bikes don’t have a boot at the bak of them to store items which you buy while shopping.

        2. @David take the bus to a bike shop and purchase one? Can purchase a bike that costs about the same as a service on the car you won’t need anymore

        3. @ Kraut , where I live there is 4 bus services and no Bike shops .
          And the bike I had was my fathers which I got for a Xmas present and it was stolen by some crimes from Bastion Point , so after it was stolen I went out and bought a V8 .

        4. @ Kraut , The 1st 3 car’s were stolen the next 3 weren’t touched and now I drive a Nissan Cube . Don’t think I would trust a Hot Air Balloon unless it ran on Helium and had a Parachute attached to the Basket .

  15. Are people not getting the message? The three new stations are being built in paddocks, apart from the existing Drury township, before the town centres are built around them. So they are being given P&R to begin with, to create some patronage while new housing gets built. By the time the housing (served by bus links) and the town centres (part residential) within walking and biking distance are built, the case for P&R goes down to a bit of parking and some juicy build-over.
    And don’t imagine accessibility isn’t a big focus, just because you don’t see it on the drawings. None of the stations could possibly be on the wrong side of the tracks, because they are all on both sides.

    1. I really hope this is how this goes how you say. But given that car parks might as well be hindu cows in Auckland, I have my doubts. Hopefully we see something similar at Albany soon.

      If you do have some influence or know people that do, why do the cycleways / footpaths go all the way around the back and come into the park and ride / station areas with the cars? why is there no straight line / shortcut option:

    2. “By the time the housing (served by bus links) and the town centres (part residential) within walking and biking distance are built, the case for P&R goes down to a bit of parking and some juicy build-over.”

      How is that going in the rest of Auckland with PnR?

      I get your point. Its an admirable approach. But history tells us drivers will dare not part with those parks which is just as well, because AT won’t ever require them to.

    3. That is a total cop out and based on a massive fallacy.
      Firstly, even in paddocks P&R isn’t cheap. Recent costs in Auckland have tended towards being closer to 20k per carpark. So that’s $10m for each station right there. With land costs these days it could be even higher.
      Second, name a single P&R site even within the urban area that’s been built over. Even Orakei which is a single stop from the city and hasn’t been considered for development or even charging.
      Once these P&Rs are built, residents will fight tooth and nail to not only keep them but spend millions on expanding.
      How about instead just spend the money to run regular feeder buses from the development and set the desired behaviour from the outset.

  16. The wide roads thing…

    I was watching a video (more of a seminar/lecture, really) a while back on Strong Towns’ Youtube channel where the speaker (possibly the main guy, I forget which one it was) made the point that the design philosophy behind that kind of road is actually something traffic engineers love. From an “urbanist” perspective, it seems great because you get the footpath and separated bike lanes and trees/grass and (though, not in this case) the bus lanes. All that good stuff, basically. But the road engineer looks at it and thinks, “Hey, a 25-32m wide road”. They don’t have to change anything about what they do and so, and I believe this was the speaker’s point, they don’t change anything else about what they do.

    I think that was Confessions of a Traffic Engineer. Ha! It was. Youtube even opened the video in the exact place. Strong Towns calls it “complete streets”:

    “Complete streets accommodate pedestrians in an auto-dominated space”

    If we take a wider look at Drury…

    There is/was a proposed private plan change in the void between Drury and Papakura, basically running from Park Estate Road (but not, since it’s on the eastern side of the Great South Road) to Gatland Road. At the moment, this appears to be a working farm with cows and stuff, but the owners clearly want to get it zoned for housing and developed. In this sense, it’d look like the opposite side of the Great South Road (which has been for at least fifteen years). In their submission, AT (maybe the Council) opposed the PPC because, possibly among other things, they were concerned about the need to provide modern transport infrastructure.

    Now, some of what AT was saying is nonsense. There is, in fact, a path with a kerb along most of that length, already. It’s narrow and it’s tarseal (so not visually distinct from the road) and the kerb does run out… and the path basically disappears to accommodate the bus stop at the Gatland Road corner. That path’s been in for a few years now, perhaps as much as ten. However, the general theme is correct. There are two main ways to Papakura from Drury (discounting the motorway, which is a dogleg)… the Great South Road and Sutton + Opaheke Roads.

    As recently as 2010-11, there was no path on either side of the Great South Road for a substantial stretch (basically the bend by the honey place to Gatland Road) and that remains the case the other way. At the time, the Drury Village to Papakura stretch of the Great South Road was a 70km/h road (that changed very recently) and I believe Sutton + Opaheke Roads is still mostly 80km/h (with three nearly right angle turns and two crossings of NIMT). To be fair, even now, there’s no sign of subdivision along these parts of Sutton and Opaheke Roads but there are places to walk to other than residences.

    As far as I can tell, there are no plans to do anything to fix this. Which is sort of the point being made in that PPC submission… you can’t zone this for housing since we don’t want to put in the stuff that housing would need.

    The Southern Path will be extended to “Drury”. However, and as with the extant part’s definition of “Papakura” (and Takanini, for that matter), this is wildly misleading since Drury doesn’t exist along the motorway. Unlike Papakura, it also doesn’t straddle the NIMT but, instead, merely the Great South Road (Drury being, after all, a rather small place in population terms). Just as the Southern Path is good for Karaka Harbourside, its southern extension will be good for Auranga. That being said, I think part of the Drury West scheme involves turning Norrie Road into a modern arterial. That will therefore involve bike lanes running east/west from the Village/Drury Central to the Southern Path.

    Another scheme is to create a new Opaheke/Drury route running from, iirc, Boundary Road to Waihoehoe Road. That is definitely planned as a modern arterial and I think it may even involve bus lanes. However, this also bypasses the existing settlement and would likewise require east/west travel to get to modern infrastructure. (This is separate to any schemes for Mill Road, which I think was going to enter Drury in a third alignment or maybe was joining into this… it was very unclear what exactly Mill Road was going to do once it got to Papakura.)

    You’ll note that neither of these involve the Great South Road which definitely has room for bike lanes, except on the aforementioned bend, which is being subdivided as we speak. It’s entirely possible I’m missing something obvious and such a plan does exist, but I doubt it.

    What I’m getting at is this… there’s all these new developments in Drury and Papakura and they all have some level of bike provision. All of them. Even Addison, which is hardly new any more (and is in Takanini, really, anyway) though it’s much worse in this respect. But every single one of them has bike lanes to no-where. Auranga currently takes you into a very industrial area or into a quasi-motorway. The development on Opaheke Road doesn’t even have bike lanes running up to Opaheke School, let alone across the bridge to the (relatively new) sport and recreational area or further up the road to Papakura Train Station. Park Estate Road will probably connect to the Southern Path when it goes south, but for now it dumps cyclists onto a footpath derived stretch of Park Estate Road and from there into a barely traffic calmed warren of 30 (or 40??) km/h streets in Rosehill or the Great South Road. And so on.

    Is it any wonder they’re so obsessed with park and rides when they seem intent on building extremely localised neighbourhood bike options? There’s some fascinating stuff in whichever document it is about modeshare at the planned Drury West College (name TBD). And by fascinating I mean “ugly”. Found it:

    1. Do agree with you on the problem with disconnected cycle lanes. I can understand why the government feels the piecemeal approach is needed for existing highly developed areas, but it’s a clear failure of planning when it’s occurring in largely greenfield development. Worse of course is when low use of such disconnected facilities is used an excuse not to develop more so we never get a proper network.

      Although some developments I do question the utility. E.g. the Henderson safer streets trial seem to have receive a lot less attention both here and elsewhere than some other ones but locally it receive a lot of opposition. While I’m in favour of the general concept, I didn’t write in support (well or anything) since it just seemed such a weird plan. I’ve cycled to the Henderson CBD a few times before, and walked around it a fair bit but although I didn’t cycle to it while the plan was in place (did drive 2-3 times) I didn’t see it was doing that much useful. I haven’t see the data but I don’t think it’s that dangerous to cycle Henderson or at least compared to the problem of getting there. Whether Lincoln Road or Great North Road or Sel Peacock Drive or really any of the ways into Henderson there’s feel much more dangerous than cycling inside Henderson. I mean sure when the cycle network into Henderson is completed those ideas may make sense but at the moment? Yeah nah, sorry I sort of agreed with those opposed (at least in terms of opposition if not their reasons) as much as I didn’t want to.

  17. Someone needs to do a financial & cost benefit assessment of providing vertical parking towers instead and freeing up the spare land for landuse development. Possibly shops on the ground floor and apartments above.

    1. Up by St Mathews in The City there is a multistorey parking building made up with RSJ’s and a concrete slab poured on top of them which would be a hell a lot cheaper the something made of Solid Concrete and when not required easier to demolish .

  18. So what are they going to do with the old Station Building at Pukekohue ? , or is another that’s going to end up on the scrap heap like alot of the others .
    If they are going to move it it should go n my opinion to Parata as that use to have an island platform years ago and the building could suit it instead of building these oversize new plastic type buildings which AT seem to like that have no character and look cold no matter what they do .

    1. I understand that has been sold to a guy who collects old heritage buildings and relocated them to his heritage complex site he is developing on the old Matangi dairy factory complex next to the Cambridge Branch line.

      1. Robin ; Thank you for that at least it’s not going to be trashed , but it’s a shame they aren’t going to use on the Auckland Network like they did with the old NewMarket Station Building .

  19. Im guessing the tracks are going to be out of commission for two years – because they are building high quality cycleway along the rail corridor… ???

  20. Are they expanding the tracks anywhere to have triple or quadding – for example, for passing purposes (other than Puke and Papakura themselves?)

    Puke looks like it will have p4 as a bay, and 1-3 through, correct?

    The park and ride – agree with everyone here. I suspect if it all takes off, it will be too well-used to get rid of them, so instead they will charge. Parking should not be free if it is built new – it’s outrageous either way but we can always rely on human greed.

    OTOH there is nothing there. I’d love for folks to be able to walk and to bike, electric if further – and if this is the only way we get the stations, it’s better than nothing.

    But I hate ‘rail money’ – so hard won – still ostensibly going to drivers’ convenience. Build the four track sections through the stations at least, to allow pathing, expresses, freight, short turns etc… at least as one of them.

    1. I admit I used to be in favour of park and rides. I no longer think they’re a great solution but meh I don’t see the need for outrage either. I do agree they shouldn’t be free though, and the station needs to be designed with the needs of pedestrians and cyclists first in mind. Equally important is that any feeder buses need to be ready from the get-go. It’s a terrible idea if they’re only added later since that will mean people will indeed get into the habit of just driving probably leading to a spiralling of low usage meaning low frequency and even more people wanting to drive.

      Also while I have no idea why they’re stopping the service for those 2 years, I do agree it seems it would be a lot more difficult to cope with a regular service than with the occasional freight train so it doesn’t seem to me that it makes no sense they they’re going to continue to allow freight trains but feel they can’t keep the service. How much worse will the rail replacement be anyway? I know the one for the Western Line is no fun, but that has to go on an odd route and along suburban streets whereas this one shouldn’t have to. (Although accepting the train route is also without stops albeit an old diesel locomotive, yes I have been on it before.) If it’s only adding e,g, 5 minutes to the travel time I sort of feel that even a 25% reduction in construction time is worth it, since the new service should be quite a lot better.

  21. By stopping the DMU services to Pukekohe and not even retaining just a weekday peak period service, there is going to be big a loss of PT patronage from Pukekohe. The rail replacement buses will take longer to do the trip between Papakura and Pukekohe and during the peak periods they will get stuck in the traffic congestion which occurs around Drury, particularly on weekday mornings and Sunday afternoons (during normal non-lockdown conditions). The congestion will be worse as many people who currently use the train will not find the bus option attractive and will likely end up driving their cars and utes instead.

    It seems a bit suspicious that KiwiRail can still continue to run their freight and passenger services, but no AT passenger services.

    The plan to remove the ADLs altogether seems more like a convenient excuse by AT to be rid of them, to avoid spending any money on refurbishing them. AT have been dead opposed to starting any DMU shuttle service to Huapai using the ADLs, which would require them to be refurbished. Now Pukekohe residents are going to loose their rail service for 2 years.

    A weekday morning and evening peak period service using the ADLs could and should continue to be run, which would leave the middle of the day and weekends free to do construction work.

    The Te Huia service should also have a new stop added at Pukekohe and at Otahuhu.

    1. Robin ; There have been numerous comments on the Tehuia FBPage asking the same Question .
      As with the ADL’s there are many think they are passed the Best Before or Use by Date but I agree with you run them pass Swanson through to Helensville as KR can use one of their Drivers to bring it back in the 1st run in the Morning after taking the Freight that goes to Whangarei ,And why also can’t they use them on a shuttle service to Waiuku and Glenbrook ?

      And these that say they are Knackered why are their big brothers the ADK’s still running fine in Mozambique as shown here ;-

  22. You may as well add a fourth line instead of leaving it till knows how long, it will just disrupt the flow on effect of the rail traffic in the future, I don’t see the point in just 3 lines.

  23. If they can’t sell them and won’t use them, can the DMUs be used to start up a commuter service in another NZ city? Christchurch? Hamilton? Dunedin?

  24. And this was last Sunday as they ran 4car sets over the Weekend to celebrate/morn the end of an era for the DMU’S ;-

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