New Zealand to construct third rail line between Westfield and Wiri in Auckland
The Government of New Zealand has allocated NZ$100m ($73.5m) for the construction of a third rail line to the North Island Main Trunk Line between Westfield and Wiri in Auckland.
The funding forms a part of the government’s NZ$2.6bn ($1.91bn) commitment to refurbish Auckland’s transport system, which includes the construction of Mill Road corridor.
Welcoming the announcement, Infrastructure New Zealand CEO Stephen Selwood said: “The government’s NZ$2.6bn commitment to Auckland’s overwhelmed transport system is a well-balanced package of investment in road, rail and bus.”
The construction of a new line is expected to improve freight access and reduce interruption to passenger services.
Additionally, government has allocated a further NZ$130m ($95.6m) for railway electrification works from Papakura to Pukekohe.
Ports of Auckland has also acknowledged the government’s decision to expand key freight and passenger rail lines throughout the city.
The line will not be directly connected to Ports of Auckland, though it is expected to help improve the port's overall capacity and flexibility.
It will also improve rail access from the Waitemata sea port to the inland ports situated at South Auckland, Waikato, Manawatu and the Bay of Plenty upon completion, thereby facilitating freight and passenger movement with minimal congestion.
Ports of Auckland also stated that it expects additional railway sector funding for the construction of a fourth main line along the Westfield-Wiri section, as well as capacity and access enhancements on the Eastern Line that leads to the Waitemata sea port.