Rail Station Upgrade Confirmed


Good news for Auckland rail users.

Auckland Transport confirms its going to do the proposed $39m upgrade to Auckland rail stations.

Papakura and Swanson are the top priorities.

Nick Seymour, Project Director Rail Improvements, ran through the impressive list to this afternoon’s Auckland Council Transport Committee meeting.

It includes the new heritage Parnell station where Mainline Steam presently is at the foot of the Domain, is included in the plan. That station would be completed, including track work, by August of next year. The Parnell station costing was: Stage 1 (building relocation) $1.1m : Stage 2 (full station including track works) $14,000,000. Concept design work has begin.

The programme which ticks off many commuter complaints about station facilities and erases some of the striking imbalances between stations facilities.

The upgrades are:

  • Parnell (new station)
  • Remuera
  • Greenlane
  • Penrose
  • Mt Albert (major upgrade, concept designs started)
  • Swanson
  • Te Mahia
  • Takinini
  • Papakura
  • Otahuhu
  • Westfield
  • Puhinui
  • Onehunga (extended platform)
  • 5 stations where platforms have been extended -Papatoetoe, Glen Innes, Meadowbank, Orakei, Mt Eden - will have extended CTV coverage to cover the longer platforms. That is monitored at Britomart 24/7

The work has to be completed by 2013 before electric trains arrive.

Auckland Transport estimate it would cost a further $14m or more if it had to be done after electrification started because of  the problems working around electric wires and having to do work at night to reduce interference with timetables.

An application has been made to NZTA to help with funding the upgrades but Auckland Transport’s POroject Director for Rail Improvements, Nick Seymour, saysthere is of course no guarantee NZTA will come through with a subsidy.

Papakura and Swanson were priorities being DMU-EMU junctions between diesel and electrified services.

Onehunga will be extended by 10m at each end and this will not upset residents living in the nearby apartments, who, according to Auckland Council Transport Chair Mike Lee, are now happy with the service alongside their window. During the construction of the line they complained bitterly worrying about the impact.

Te Mahia needs an urgent upgrade

At today’s committee meeting there was some discusion about whether the boarded up Penrose station could be shifted somewhere else or whether it could be used as a cafe but it was felt it was too far away from potential customers being way off the road across the overbridge.

The old Penrose station building

Puhinui was identified as a future important hub for when the Onehunga-airport-Puhinui line is expected to be included in the Auckland Spatial Plan wishlist. A new overbridge is going in in the area for electrification.

Auckland Transport said Drury was also being given some thought.

Mr Seymour said where possible and funding allowed park and rides would be included in any upgrades.

Mike Lee told the meeting former Labour deputy prime minister Michael Cullen had torpedoed plans for electrification as far as Pukekohe and that was a mistake.

“We had a tussle with him and couldn’t convince him. But Pukekohe has become a major commuter station. Sooner rather than later we will need electrification to Pukekohe after 2013. Maybe we should put it in the Spatial Plan.”




  1. Buffalo Bob says:

    So what…no funding for the proposed Pukekohe station/park and ride?

    Te Mahia is a joke, the numbers dont stack up on this station….The money would be better used to bring in Drury…

  2. Anthony says:

    Sweet as…I just wish they would put the similar shelters on the Tranz Metro lines though….

  3. Matt L says:

    It will be interesting to see if they just stick with the standard shelters at these stations (apart from Mt Albert) or if they go for larger ones as shelter coverage seems to be a hot topic and I have even heard that the AT CEO didn’t like the size of the ones we have (all are from before his time)

    I am also yet to be convinced that extending the wires to Puke makes economic sense. Using some rough calculations it will cost in excess of $100m with is a huge amount for how many people use the station.

  4. Buffalo Bob says:

    Agree with you there Matt…but Puke is going to continue to see growth…specially as Pukekohe’s population is set to rise in the future. I wonder if Pukekohe’s new station is going to be done in conjunction with the Manukau Road Redevelopment.

  5. Alphatron says:

    The operating cost savings from using through electric services compared to Diesel shuttles to Papakura make extension of electrification economically viable, if somebody is prepared to stump up $100 million.

  6. DanC says:

    @Buffalo Bob, Drury should definitely be brought into the mix with platforms running parallel with Tui Street. It wouldn’t take much.

  7. Buffalo Bob says:

    @DanC Absolutely…costs would be kept down with the use of the Waihoehoe Road rail overbridge, meaning no need for a dedicated pedestrian bridge. It would be a start…

  8. Kurt says:

    A station at the Parnell Baths would be more of use than at the bottom of the domain although I realise it is a little restricted for space. It would be brilliant in summer and of use to commuters who live in the eastern Parnell area.

  9. Sooty says:

    Buffalo Bob you are the joke.

    Why shouldn’t Te Mahia get upgraded?

  10. Andrew says:

    Operationally electrification to Pukekohe makes sense. I see the case for it will become stronger once the main part of the system is electrified.
    A station a Drury would be very useful and would help the economics of lectrification to Pukekohe
    Drury seams like the ideal park and ride site right off the motorway with plenty of land.
    I was surprised with Swanson, is the plan to put in a third platform for DMU shuttles?
    Why not continue DMU shuttle to Henderson and at least give some far west pa a one seat ride?

  11. Buffalo Bob says:

    I like to joke…but the patronage figures for Te Mahia are simply no laughing matter….

  12. Geoff says:

    Does anyone know what the confirmed plan for Swanson is? Has the third track and platform been agreed as part of the upgrade?

  13. Owen Thompson says:

    Mahia barks like a dog. It is hidden away behind the two road accesses and it looks dangerous. Better visibility is needed, but the only way to do that would be to knock out a business on Gt Sth Rd.

  14. KarlHansen says:

    Great to hear all this - and great that my fears raised yesterday that they can’t find no money for the stations seems unfounded.

  15. Martin says:

    Its just a pity that National / Kiwirail are not able to chip in with the little wee bit of extra dosh needed to plug the electric gap between Te Rapa and Southern Auckland

  16. Brian says:

    Buffalo Bob is right. Te Mahia is a joke!!. The patronage is pathetic, and as soon as improvements are carried out there, the locals seem keen to smash them up as quickly as possible. They don’t deserve anything better. and It’s not far from Te Mahia to Manurewa.
    Drury is definitely a good idea, and Pukekohe patronage is booming. Even Tuakau is booming and they are campaigning for train service!!!!

  17. KarlHansen says:

    “the locals seem keen to smash them up as quickly as possible”

    “The locals” “don’t deserve better”? Brian, vandalism shows a problem with security first and foremost, not with “the locals”.

    That’s just abandoning the large majority who doesn’t vandalise things to the miscreants. That kind of thinking is a slippery slope to the old “Oh well, if they WANT to live in filth…” that played a big role in how slum areas were created. Institutionalised neglect, and as a result, even more flight of those who can still afford to leave the area.

    I know I’m using some strong language here, but the concept that one abandons areas or upgrades for such a reason - I feel quite strongly about.

  18. Bryan says:

    Andrew, iirc Swanson is to get a “dock” platform (on the southern side of the existing platform, where WCC had planned to put a carpark), to be used by the diesel shuttles. The EMUs would use the existing two platforms.

    There is also a plan for a carpark in a different location - perhaps WCC bought the neighbouring 5-acre block and two houses that they were for sale last year?

    Will AT move toward installing proper weather protection, with a verandah sheltering the whole platform?

  19. Brian says:

    Karl Hansen, I agree with everything you say. However in all walks of life these days we give in to the lowest common denominator, i.e. we increase the price of beer because a few can’t handle it, we bow down to foreigners who come here and want to change the way we live and want us to change the rules for them, we give in to taggers who deface our buildings because they are too young to do anything with. I thought the security cameras would fix the problem, but they get smashed too!!!
    Spend the money where it will be better utilised. TeMahia is not and never will be a viable station. You only need to look at where it is to understand why not many people are game to use it..

  20. Geoff says:

    @Martin - By “little wee bit” you presumably mean “about half a billion dollars”?


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