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# 255689 23-Aug-2019 21:47
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Just received:

 

 

The NZ Transport Agency has approved funding for construction of the Hamilton to Auckland start up rail service, Transport Minister Phil Twyford announced today.

 

This funding enables the implementation of the service. It includes construction and operation with funding of $92.37 million, made up of $79.80 million from the Transport Agency and $12.57 million from local authorities.

 

Phil Twyford said the service is an important first step to strengthening the connection between two of New Zealand’s largest and fastest growing urban areas.

 

“We know more and more people are commuting between Hamilton and Auckland, and this service will give them a real choice between being stuck in traffic or relaxing on the train.

 

“An important part of our transport policy is giving people options so they don’t always have to take their car, freeing up the roads for those that have to drive.

 

“Not only will this service take the stress out of commuting but the carriages will be comfortable and equipped with Wi-Fi, allowing passengers to use their travel time productively.

 

“Our Government is tackling the long-term issues and investing nearly $4 billion in public transport, rapid transit and rail across New Zealand. Auckland and the Waikato are booming and it’s important we build the right infrastructure to unlock their potential.

 

“The service will initially start with a four-carriage train which can carry 150 passengers - with two morning peak trains and two return afternoon peak trains. As demand grows, it can be expanded to a five-carriage train carrying up to 200 passengers,” Phil Twyford said.

 

The service is expected to roll out of Frankton in Hamilton in mid-2020, will stop at The Base in Rotokauri before going onto Huntly and finally stopping in Papakura in Auckland, where passengers can change onto the Auckland Public Transport Network. Future stops may include Te Kauwhata, Pokeno and Tuakau.

 

Future improvements could come under the Hamilton to Auckland Corridor partnership with further services and more stops.

 





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  # 2304939 23-Aug-2019 21:58
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I still wonder how many people will use it even with the massive subsidy.

88 mins to get to Papakura and you've then got up to change trains to head closer to the city with Britomart still being up to 55 mins away.


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  # 2304940 23-Aug-2019 22:05
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We just drive to Papakura and get on the train there.





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  # 2304949 23-Aug-2019 22:32
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sbiddle: I still wonder how many people will use it even with the massive subsidy.

88 mins to get to Papakura and you've then got up to change trains to head closer to the city with Britomart still being up to 55 mins away.

 

Isn't that quicker than driving during the peak hours? This is a peak only service where rail really does show its significant advantage over driving. It'll be 88 mins Hamilton-Papakura then 55 mins Papakura-Britomart rain or shine. The equivalent car journey would probably have a worse average journey length as well as a much bigger variance.

 

Only downside would be for those whose final destination is not near the Southern Line.


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  # 2304964 23-Aug-2019 22:41
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What a complete and utter waste of time and money.

 

It would be cheaper to put a railway line from Auckland airport to Manukau and put on small but frequent commuter planes.

 

Sure the rail line will be busy to start with but after a couple of months I predict there will be less than 25 users per day.

 

John

 

 





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  # 2305003 24-Aug-2019 08:10
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Wait for the first breakdown on the Pukekohe to Papakura section of the line. It seems to happen every couple of days and usually is about an hour wait for a rail replacement bus to turn up in Pukekohe.

If they can’t get a semi reliable service running between Pukekohe and Papakura, I seriously doubt it will be any more reliable all the way to Hamilton.

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  # 2305007 24-Aug-2019 08:33
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SATTV:

 

What a complete and utter waste of time and money.

 

It would be cheaper to put a railway line from Auckland airport to Manukau and put on small but frequent commuter planes.

 

Sure the rail line will be busy to start with but after a couple of months I predict there will be less than 25 users per day.

 

John

 

 

 

 

 

 

You're dreaming if you think a rail line to the airport would be cheaper. It was estimated to cost 2.2 billion by AT back in 2016.






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  # 2305041 24-Aug-2019 09:12
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If they can’t get a semi reliable service running between Pukekohe and Papakura, I seriously doubt it will be any more reliable all the way to Hamilton.

 

They're currently still running the ex-Perth trains built in the 80's on that section as a interim measure since that section is not electrified. These trains are very difficult to maintain and operate due to their age.

 

The plan is to replace these with new electric trains (which will have batteries allowing operation over non-electrified tracks) which will improve reliability. I understand these trains are currently being built in Spain (by the same manufacturer as the current electric trains running between Swanson/Onehunga/Pakakura/Manukau and Britomart) and will be shipped to New Zealand soon.

 

The Hamilton-Papakura service will be operated using different equipment as well.


 
 
 
 


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  # 2305057 24-Aug-2019 10:00
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I can only assume that the agencies involved have done extensive research on the type of commuters that this type of service will attract. Maybe they should consider the “Is your journey really necessary?” mantra. How many of the office jobs in central Auckland really need to be there? Would some of those businesses be any less effective if they were located in Hamilton?

 

I assume also, that there is parking for 150 cars at the Frankton station? Because most Aucklanders know how well the Park&Ride system works at the moment.

 

Sure am glad my petrol taxes are being used for something useful. Meantime ferries from my local area only run at peak times on week days. Oh well, guess I’ll take my car.

 

 

 

Edit: As far as commuter aircraft go, Hamilton airport is probably the worst in the country for fog. So a reliable service would be difficult to guarantee.





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  # 2305110 24-Aug-2019 10:34
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Nothing but another feel-good virtue signalling stunt that will be a miserable failure economically speaking. The subsidies required to make this work are huge. Users are only paying a small percentage of the actual cost pp.

The business cases never stacked up, but it was going to be approved regardless because it was political. Kiwi Build anyone?










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  # 2305129 24-Aug-2019 11:12
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scuwp: Nothing but another feel-good virtue signalling stunt that will be a miserable failure economically speaking. The subsidies required to make this work are huge. Users are only paying a small percentage of the actual cost pp.

The business cases never stacked up, but it was going to be approved regardless because it was political. Kiwi Build anyone?

 

Don't worry. If that wasn't enough taxpayer money being wasted, the business case for building the high speed link between both cities is currently being prepped as the Govt are pretty well committed to this project.

 

The current project has running costs of around $7.7mil per year and expected best case after 3 years is that fares will recover $1.56m which is a *huge* subsidy for a service. 

 

I think a train between both is a logical move, but the simple fact is out population isn't big enough to sustain high speed rail. Imagine how much the subsidies would ultimately be for a $2+ billion new high speed rail network.

 

 

 

 


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  # 2305237 24-Aug-2019 13:38
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How many people would move from Auckland to Hamilton if they could get to their job in Auckland in a reasonable amount of time? If they end up building the 160km/h train lines between the two cities I would do it. 


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  # 2305243 24-Aug-2019 13:52
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Unfortunately in NZ if you mention rail transport the naysayers come out of the woodwork  saying it's a waste of money and will never work.  Guess that's why we don't get a nice  rail service here.  Was in the Goldcoast last month.  Great rail and tram service .  The rail service  between the GC and Brisbane gets up to 145Kph  on 3'6"  gauge the same as here but I suspect  with our trains between Hamilton and Papakura will get up to 70Kph if  we're lucky.  As for only going to Papakura and then change trains, this is nuts  and says a lot for the way we do things here. 





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  # 2305248 24-Aug-2019 14:01
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For those who want to read the actual BC - as opposed to half baked internet opinions:

 

https://www.hamilton.govt.nz/our-services/transport/Documents/Single%20Stage%20BC%20Report%20FINAL-web.pdf


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  # 2305249 24-Aug-2019 14:01
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Bring on the Auckland to Wellington link, and faster transport to Auckland.

 

If I could take the train to Hamilton or Auckland from my town, and save time in the process, that'd be a massive win, my household could certainly drop to 1 vehicle from 2 for a start.





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  # 2305254 24-Aug-2019 14:30
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old3eyes:

 

As for only going to Papakura and then change trains, this is nuts  and says a lot for the way we do things here. 

 

 

It's realistically not possible for the train to head to Britomart in peak times without there being an extra track as it would interfere with current services. It's this very reason that heavy rail for airport line was going to cost so much - it wasn't just the bridge the undergrounding to the airport, it's also laying new track all the way into the city to cope with the additional demand and services.

 

 


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