How It’s Looking: Waterfront Trams
The trams are back in Auckland – well, at least, the first section of tram track has been laid on the corner of Halsey and Gaunt in the Wynyard Quarter waterfront area.
The amusing part this afternoon was watching some motorists freak out when they found what look like train tracks suddenly appearing in the middle of the road -and they braked and didn’t quite know what to expect when they went over them.
It does look a bit odd at the moment – a sole section of track on the curve of the road.
The heritage trams marks the return of trams in Auckland for more than 50 years.
When completed, the 1.5km loop will run clockwise along Jellicoe Street, down Halsey Street, along Gaunt Street and up Daldy Street in time for the RWC.
Two Melbourne SW6 Class Trams are to be gifted to MOTAT. These will then be leased for the purposes of this tramway.
Construction involves, besides the laying of tracks and road renewal, the installing of over-head wires at approximately 6m in height.
Full details of the construction & route are here
The problem with the plan, wonderful as it is to see trams back, is that it is so typical Auckland – i.e. half-hearted. We will do a little something but not really complete the job and hope one day we will find the funding and the motivation to make it really worthwhile and meaningful.
What we really need is for the tram line to go somewhere -and be a real tourist attraction and for Auckland Transport to adopt this excellent plan to take it as far as Western Springs and the zoo.
<Summer Rail Programme series: How It’s Looking At…