Auckland plans to have trams and says NO to cars

Auckland-light rail system_SCCZEN_A_280811SPLAUCKLAND13_620x310Cars may be pushed out of Auckland’s main street as the city’s transport authority looks to modern trams to move growing throngs of commuters.
Auckland Transport chief engineer Steve Hawkins warns there will be insufficient space in much of Queen St for general traffic to co-exist with trams running in each direction every few minutes between the waterfront and Dominion Road.
„For the section between Wellesley St and Customs St, we would essentially have just light-rail vehicles and pedestrians,” he told Auckland Council’s infrastructure committee.
Auckland Transport chair Lester Levy said in disclosing the light rail investigation in January that he wanted to attract private investment to kick off a staged development, starting with a link between Wynyard Quarter and Mt Roskill via Queen St and Dominion Rd which he hoped could be built for less than USD 1 billion.
Transport planners envisage four isthmus tram routes, three converging on Queen St and the other from Onehunga feeding into Symonds St.
A Y-shaped route from Wynyard Quarter to Queen St via Fanshawe St would be a prerequisite to trams running in 2019 up Dominion Rd and then west along Stoddard Rd to a depot near Richardson Rd in Owairaka.
That would be followed by trams along Sandringham Rd in 2021, then from Onehunga via Manukau Rd in 2030 and on Mt Eden Rd in 2035.
Photo: / An artist’s impression of Queen Street as a pedestrian and light rail-only space

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