The Government of New Zealand has agreed to fund half of the NZ$2.8bn-NZ$3.4bn required to build Auckland’s City Rail Link (CRL).
According to a heads of agreement signed between the government and Auckland Council, the state will fund 50% of the CRL.
A more detailed sponsors’ agreement will be framed over the next few months to materialise the commitments.
Once framed, the government will begin to make funding available possibly from next year.
CRL is a 3.4km-long underground train line that will run from Britomart station in downtown Auckland through the CBD to connect with the existing western line at Mt Eden station.
New Zealand Associate Finance Minister Steven Joyce said: “In January this year, the Prime Minister announced the government would accelerate delivery of the CRL to help address Auckland’s transport issues. This agreement is an important milestone in the project and it underlines the government’s commitment to keeping Auckland moving.
“The Heads of Agreement sets out in-principle commitments from government and Auckland Council, and contains broader funding, governance and risk management arrangements.
“The Heads of Agreement also outlines arrangements for establishing an independent special purpose entity to deliver the CRL, working with Auckland Transport, KiwiRail and others as necessary.”
Upon completion, CRL will double the capacity of Auckland’s metro rail network and will help save commuters’ travel time.
At peak time, the line will allow 30,000 people to travel an hour.