Airport Anarchy

Airport AnarchyFor years, we and many others have been saying that better options are needed for accessing the airport and for even longer, politicians, officials and experts have either wilfully ignored the need to serve one of Auckland’s major destinations with public transport or have actively opposed and sabotaged it. Now the chickens are coming home to roost with roads reportedly clogged so bad that many are missing flights or commenting that it took longer to drive home from the airport than fly to Auckland from Sydney. It seems even Mayor Phil Goff got caught in the mayhem. And things could get worse with the airports busiest days of the year coming …
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Airbus Express becomes SkyBus

Auckland’s city to airport bus has new owners bringing with them a new name, a new livery and promising a higher quality service. The Airbus Express service has been bought by SkyBus who operate Melbourne’s airport bus service. Free on-board Wi-Fi and ground hosts to welcome intrepid travellers to Auckland are just the beginning of big plans by new owners to expand – and smarten – the 24-hour airport bus service. The former Airbus fleet has already had its name changed to that of Melbourne’s 38-year-old SkyBus, which is taking it under its wing. It will be repainted from light blue to red as more buses are added between the fast-growing …
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Kirkbride Interchange and Rail Future Proofing

Rail to the airport is in the news again – and not in a good way – this time related to the Kirkbride interchange the NZTA are currently building and whether it’s future proofed for rail. The answers by Auckland Transport and the NZTA also hint at some of the dysfunction, lack of critical thinking and potentially deliberate sabotage that’s long plagued this project – one which is constantly one of the most popular publicly. Auckland Transport is having to stump of $21 million to “future-proof” a motorway project for trains or trams to the airport. The council body is paying the money to the Government’s Transport Agency, towards extra costs of designing a …
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A look at the SMART Approach Trial

This is a guest post from Tony Cooper There’s going to be a new jet thrill ride in Queenstown – flying through tight mountainous terrain at night to the airport. Using new award-winning technology introduced by Airways New Zealand pilots will be able to dodge and weave among the mountains in the dark and even in cloud. The technology is called Required Navigation Performance Authorisation Required (RNP AR) and allows computers to use satellite GPS technology to steer jets along very precise paths in a range of weather conditions without a human hand. When implemented in 2016 it will allow the airport to operate jets at night – current jet …
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Airport taxis expensive

In a completely unsurprising revelation, it’s really expensive to get a taxi from the airport. Catching a cab downtown from Auckland Airport has been labelled one of the most expensive taxi fares in the world by an international travel company. According to a CheapFlights comparison of prices in 24 cities, New Zealand has the third most expensive per-kilometre taxi fares. And a Herald investigation has found some Auckland taxi companies quoting price tags up to $86 for a trip — more than the price of some domestic flights — that other companies can deliver for just $35. The report, released last month but based on data from March 2013, found the …
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Airport only pretends to want a rail connection

On Saturday of all days, Auckland Airport (AIA) released their new 30 year vision including a website called Airport of the Future. In many ways this doesn’t appear all that different from their previous long term vision documents, with the key change seeming to be that they eventually want the future Northern runway to be longer than currently planned and consented for. Here’s the video that they have put together to show the long term vision. There are a couple of key things that AIA are predicting to happen over the next 30 or so years. Annual passenger movements will increase from 14 million to 40 million The number of …
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Airport looks to have strong future growth

Last week Auckland Airport held an investor day which among other things provided some very useful information about what we can expect from the airport in the future. The presentation gives quite a lot of details around where some of the future growth will come from but for me the most interesting slide in the whole presentation is the image below which is in the section talking about the airports 30 year vision. It really helps to show just how important it is going to be to get some good transport options into the area. That is an absolutely massive increase in passenger numbers and so it’s no surprise when …
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Costs and Benefits of the Governments Auckland Transport Package

A couple of months ago the government finally announced that they would support the City Rail Link, albeit with a later start date than the council are pushing for. A few days later they then went on to announce a massive road building binge including upgrades/additions to the areas around the interchange of SH1 and SH18, the Southern motorway south of Manukau and SH20A to the airport. Along with this they also agreed on major support for the AMETI project and the East West Link while pushing ahead with designation for an additional harbour crossing. In each of the roading projects – perhaps with the exception of another harbour crossing …
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Onehunga buses improved

The focus for improvements to public transport around Onehunga in recent years has been in the form of trains with services reinstated to the town centre back in 2010 after being stopped 37 years previously. The station has since been wired up and is now ready and waiting for our new electric trains to arrive. Positively patronage at the station has also been steadily improving and combined with the station at Te Papapa, is likely to exceed 2016 level of patronage that was predicted when the station was built. But while the trains have been added, not a lot of effort had gone into the local bus infrastructure until now. …
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