Latest Transport Updates

News on Electrification and Manukau South Rail Link


One thing Talking Auckland takes pride in is quality investigative blogging on issues that affect Auckland the most. When something does not seem quite right Talking Auckland sends out the emails, makes the phone calls and has face to face meetings over coffees to go follow-up on the matter at hand and report back through the blog.

In this case two enquiries both on Auckland’s transport have come back with some answers of interest. One from Auckland Transport on the Manukau South Rail Link and the other from Kiwi Rail on electrification.


Manukau South Rail Link

Those who have been following the blog know that I have been pushing for Auckland Transport to get the Manukau South Rail Link built as fast as possible. This link would allow direct train services from Pukekohe and Papakura to Manukau Station (and back again) directly. This would be in place rather than having to go all the way to Puhinui Station, wait for a Manukau train from Britomart and backtrack half your journey into Manukau. Vice versa if wanting to go south from Manukau.

It was always planned that a south link would be built from the Manukau Line connecting back to the main Southern/Eastern Lines. However, things have not quite panned out in getting the South Link built so rallying continues until it is finally done.

In May I asked Auckland Transport what was the update on the Business Case Study ordered by the Council Transport Committee after I alerted the said Committee to the South Link issue. Back then Auckland Transport said the study would be due at a conservative estimate of November (next month). I emailed Auckland Transport this morning and they basically replied:

Auckland Transport will be in a position to answer the Manukau South link in March. The rail strategy will be testing the Manukau South Rail Link along with full development of the network from an operational as well as patronage point of view.

Exciting times as we will get to see a full rail strategy in March 2014. I can easily wait until then if the South Link will be part of a wider package of the passenger rail network (which will include Pukekohe Electrification)


So this is where we are with the Manukau South Rail Link folks. March 2014 we await with anticipation.



Murmurs came about that electrification could have been set back a year. I sent some questions off to Kiwi Rail and this is the estimated completion date for the electrification construction around the Auckland Rail Network

  • Eastern Line from Westfield Junction to Britomart – April 2014

  • South of Otahuhu owing to the 7 day a week ramp down from 8:40pm to end of Christmas Block of Lines – Early 2014

  • Newmarket Station to Britomart Station o end of Christmas Block of Lines – Early 2014

  • And Britomart Station itself Christmas will be carried out over the Christmas Block of Lines – Early 2014

These timings fit in with Auckland Transport’s schedule around testing and commissioning of the EMUs.


Excellent news then and the murmurs can be put to sleep. Although in saying that we might want to know why we are getting these Train Control failures that cripple the Auckland network as it has just done (and now restored as I write this).


And that is the latest on major transport construction happenings in Auckland. I will compile a post next week on more transport ideas and planning after I attend this conference on Friday: