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Auckland hurries up rail project

Auckland Council has brought forward its spending on the City Rail Link (CRL).

Money previously earmarked for the 2012-2013 CRL budget will now be spent in the current financial year. It will come from public transport and travel demand management projects that cannot be progressed in the 2011-12 year due to external factors such as delays in securing necessary resource consents.

The CRL, a project managed by Auckland Transport, will be a new 3.5-kilometre underground electrified rail line allowing Britomart to become a through station and providing up to three new stations near Aotea Centre, Karangahape Road and Newton.

This is money that the council had planned to spend anyway on the CRL in the following financial year, says said the chair of the Strategy and Finance Committee, councillor Penny Webster.

“It is being brought forward to assist in achieving important project milestones, such as making surveys of the land likely to be used in the project.”

Webster says it will have no impact on the overall cost of the project.

$6.3 million will be spent on work including geotechnical surveys, utility and building assessments, contaminated site reports and rail operations modelling.

$1.7m will go towards providing the Government with a revised business case, requested by the government.

Auckland’s mayor has welcomed news that work on the City Rail Link (CRL) is progressing.

“The City Rail Link is a key project that will allow more trains to travel through Britomart, increasing the number and frequency of trips across the whole rail network,” says Len Brown.

“Aucklanders have waited long enough for better public transport. This council is determined to get on with it.”

“With the CRL, a journey from New Lynn to the Aotea Station will take less than half the time and from Manukau to Karangahape Road, the journey will be a third faster than now.

“We cannot leave fixing Auckland’s public transport system to our kids,” says the mayor.

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