The NZ Transport Agency welcomes the launch of Auckland’s new electric train service, and it congratulates Auckland Transport, KiwiRail, Transdev, which operates the trains, and CAF, their Spanish manufacturer, for its introduction.
“The operation of the first section of the electrified network is a very significant development for Auckland and for Aucklanders,” says the Transport Agency’s Chief Executive Geoff Dangerfield. “Modern, quiet, and faster trains will encourage more people to use rail, and we expect that to have a positive impact on transport right across Auckland.”
Mr Dangerfield says the Transport Agency is an important funder of the rail upgrade.
Alongside the $1.1b the Crown provided KiwiRail to electrify lines and improve tracks and signalling, the Transport Agency provided just over half of the $520m to buy and maintain the new trains, and just over half of the $105m to construct their depot at Wiri. The Agency has also co-invested in Auckland Transport’s programme of station upgrades.
The Transport Agency’s funds are provided through the National Land Transport Programme (NLTP), which distributes money collected from fuel taxes, road user charges, and vehicle registration fees.
“Investing some of those funds in public transport benefits everyone who travels. Improved public transport gives people with more travel choices - they don’t have to rely on their car - and helps reduce congestion on busy motorways and roads.”
Mr Dangerfield says the electrification project reflects the Transport Agency’s developing partnership with Auckland Transport and Auckland Council, and funding support from the NLTP for many other city projects that also benefit drivers, cyclists and those who walk.
“Improving all forms of transport are important building blocks to ensure our biggest city continues to grow and remains a great place for business and living,” he says.
In addition to helping fund electrification, the Transport Agency has another important regulatory role. It is responsible for rail safety in New Zealand, and earlier this month gave its official approval for the first electric trains to operate between Onehunga and Britomart.
For more information please contact:
Auckland/Northland Media Manager
NZ Transport Agency
T: 09 928 8720
M: 027 213 7616