Orakei Station Park & Ride Axed?


Some Eastern residents are worried that the Park and Ride alongside Orakei’s train station is being axed.

This is because of the latest Orakei Point Masterplan - the district plan change for the proposed development at Orakei Point.

There are 200 parking spaces alongside the train station - but complaining residents say that space seems to have vanished from the latest plans which talk of “substantial car parking is anticipated for Orakei Point, much of this subterranean or contained within residential apartment buildings.”

A Mission Bay resident who has written to the council objecting says that the 200-space already can’t cope and there is often no space by 10am.

She writes: “Because the Masterplan removes the Park-and-Ride provision, it severely disadvantages residents of Orakei, Mission Bay and Remuera as it limits our ability to travel by train.

“The council’s transport manager is quoted as saying this won’t happen for 7-8 years, but there is already a huge issue today in terms of available capacity. Surrounding streets do not allow parking and future bus services are unlikely to solve the problem as all of these suburbs asre extremely hilly with many areas not well served by buses.

“Journey times would be severely compromised if residents were forced to walk/bus to the Orakei train station, thereby diminishing the attractiveness of rail. Even if the 200 caprparks are re-instaed when the development is completed, this doesn’t address the carparking capacity issue already faced at orakei.

“Rather than building a ‘model transit community’ of 700 residences at Orakei Point, (only some of which would have residents who would travel daily by train), council planning would be better focused on ensuring that the thousands of residents of Orakei, Mission Bay and Remuera have better access to train services today through increasing Park-and-Ride capacity.

It's raining bad news out the window of Orakei rail commuters

The resident, Joanne Keestra, then goes on to make some wider suggestions:

“I note than in 2005, the council resolved that there would be no highway component in the Eastern Transport Corridor north of Glen Innes, instead relying on improved roads to carry the passenger transort.
“However the major arterial routes of Kepa/Kohimaramara Rds and Remuera Rd are already carrying significant transport volumes while Kepa/ Kohi Rd continue to be burdened with large numbers of commercial vehicles, including container trucks… At some point, an alternative road transport solution will be required to link the city/port with Glen Innes and further south/east. Failure to continue to protect and provide for such a road corridor is extremely short-sighted and places a huge safety and environmental burden on communities along the existing arterial routes.
“If Orakei Point is developed, this area is unlikely to ever be available for meeting the city’s wider transport needs (as the Orakei Point residents would strongly oppose a new highway and use of the Public Works Act to forcibly acquire ‘developed land’ at Orakei Point would be extremely expensive.)
She said this shouldn’t be labelled a Masterplan as it fails to consider Auckland’s wider transport needs. Good transit communities overseas are much better integrated with the surrounding neighbourhoods and transport issues for the neighbouring communities and wider region arfe included in the development plan.
She said this plan failed to do this.
Removing an already overflowing Park-and-Ride would be dreadful and a shocking precident.
I can’t follow what feels like the ever-changing Orakei Point development but if these residents are right, we should be calling on the council to stop this discouragement of public transport.




  1. rtc says:

    Sorry but when you live that close to town you need to accept the fact that you are going to have to either catch a bus or walk/cycle to a train station. Park and rides should only be used on the outskirts of the city - the cost of building carparking here for commuters would cost far more than would be worthwhile.

  2. rtc says:

    Furthermore, the Eastern highway is dead, and anyone suggesting this as a solution to traffic out East and as a reason against this development is off their rockers.

  3. ingolfson says:

    Indeed. You would expect that a community person from the area wouldn’t say that kind of stuff…

  4. Joshua says:

    She should intead be focusing efforts on encouraging a eastern tram/light rail line out that way, but when so close to town, park and ride definately not required.

  5. Scott says:

    I’m not sure if the Orakei park & ride was free like the ones on the shore. However I support the retention/ addition of park and ride services where the market rate for parking exceeds the market rate for the value of land. I don’t understand why it hasn’t been done on the shore but the economic solution for any shortage (where quantity supplied exceeds quantity demanded) is for prices to be increased until the market returns to equilibrium. Im sure we can all think of lots of uses for the revenue

  6. James Pole says:

    @rtc: I’m of the opinion that a park’n'ride would still be useful even that close to the city. There is already an unofficial park’n'ride along Tamaki Drive near the city where local commuters ‘interchange’ from their car to/from the buses — and there has been talk of setting up an official one at some point in the future.

    I would rather see a park’n'ride feeding the rail service than a park’n'ride feeding the buses. Rail would provide a more reliable and (eventually) frequent service compared with the buses.

    As for the suggestions for light rail, that is probably a decade or two out at the least. Any light rail for Auckland would probably be done on highly utilized routes like Mt Eden, Dominion, Great North and Great South Roads. Tamaki Drive has no where close to the amount of pax found on these routes.

    So we need to provide commuters with a reliable and frequent option in the short/medium term. Rail + Park’n'ride seems to fit the bill. Once we get light rail, then it might be worth reconsidering this situation again.

  7. Jeremy Harris says:

    Firstly, it has been part of the plan since the beginning of this proposed development to get rid of the park and ride, I can’t think of any better use for land around a train station than building multi-level apartment buildings..!

    Secondly, the suggestion that buses can’t act as feeders because the suburbs are “hilly” is crazy, buses can go to almost every residential street in the city…

    Every PT supporter should be saying good riddance to an inner city park-and-ride…

    From the book Transport For Suburbia:

    Some public transport systems rely extensively on access by car, especially by residents of low-density areas. Interestingly, reliance on car access is usually inversely related to the system’s overall success in creating mode shift. Melbourne’s rail system has nearly 40,000 park and ride spaces, three times the 14,000 spaces on Toronto’s subway, but Toronto’s carries nearly twice as many rail passengers. When a 400-space bus park and ride station was opened in Melbourne in 2003 as part of a freeway extension, planners proudly pointed out that it soon filled. But a subsequent survey found that 98 percent of commuters had previously walked to their local shop and taken the bus for the whole trip: in other words, park and ride had increased the number of car trips, not reduced them!

    Park and Ride is popular for peak period travel to city centres, but is rarely used for off-peak and non-central journeys. If provided on a large scale, it wastes valueable land that could otherwise be used for transit-orientated-development, as well as adding to traffic levels in transit-orientated sub-centres. Finally cold engine starts mean that the short park and ride trips often produce almost as much pollution as would be the case if the traveller continued all the way to their destination: this is particularly so for schemes operating on the edge of city centres or small towns.

    There will always be public transport patrons who use cars to access the network, because they live in remote areas with limited service, or simply dislike walking to the bus stop. Some parking needs to be provided for these passengers, lest they drive all the way to their destination. But park and ride should be a supplementary access mode, with the main emphasis being on feeder services, walking and cycling. The best place for the public transport user to leave their car is at home.

  8. rtc says:

    Nice quote Jeremy, I think that sums up the arguments against Park and Rides somewhere like this well. Let’s remember that a 200 spcae car park will be replaced by a dense housing development of 700 apartments. That’s probably over 1000 people living there, so 5 times the catchment of what is currently a carpark. Furthermore, the park and ride that is there presently was, as far as I am aware, always just a way to make use of what was otherwise vacant land, and extremely valuable land at that.

  9. Kurt says:

    Yeah I hate parking and riding. Its far far too convenient. And the fact that Orakei is full every work day and has transformed a little used station into one of the busier ones is a sign of true failure keeping 200 hundred plus cars out of the city daily.

    I would much rather have another hideous set of apartments set up on the land instead, just like Newmarket. Quite how paying another fare for a bus connection plus the eternity it adds to the journey is a no brainer isn’t it, trains wont be used but cars will be.

    Sure no park in ride will enhance public transport just like more apartments will make Orakei a nicer place and not blight the landscape. But of course this is nothing to do with PT is it. No its all about making a hell of a lot of money for a very few property developers isn’t it.

  10. jarbury says:

    The design is actually quite nice for this one in my opinion. A lot more thought has gone into it than you would usually get.

    I agree with Jeremy, that it is inevitable that this park & ride will go. Having 1200 people living effectively on top of a train station is surely better than having a 200 space wasteland carpark?

  11. Indi says:

    Has it occurred to any of you that trains travel two ways? People living in Orakei live a considerable distance from the southern destinations of the rail network. And many of us are happy to keep our cars out of the city by catching the train, but need cars before and after work to drop off small children to school/preschool. I have tried using the bus as a feeder service on days when I’m not doing the school run and it adds another half-hour to the journey. The alternative is to walk three kms - again adding an extra burden of time to a busy schedule.
    By the way, when all the extra housing is created, I presume the occupants will be driving to the city, adding to the congestion?

  12. Jeremy Harris says:

    @Kurt, if the system was set up properly with a zonal based fare structure, free transfers for a 2 hour period between bus and train, more frequent trains and frequent feeder buses what would be your objection then..?

    If your car use to the park and ride is more polluting than it would if you just drove the whole way in to the CBD and you are taking up valueable space around a train station where people could be living car-free, when you could be taking up space in a parking garage in the CBD, you might as well just drive the whole way in to the CBD… Please read the quote again…

  13. Matt L says:

    Indi - If most of the people living in the apartments worked in town then why would they drive when it would be quicker and cheaper to catch a train.

  14. Indi says:

    Matt L - because many people are so wedded to their cars they won’t use public transport, even if they are close to a train station. People might work in the city, but at some distance from Britomart, so in my experience these people will drive.


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