Crucial Day For Waikato Rail Link Plan

ham race

HAMILTON CITY: Final race for the rail plan?

A public meeting to plead for the Waikato to Auckland rail service will be held in Hamilton tonight - even the arch MP critic of the idea is turning up to discuss it.

An excellent and vigorous campaign by the CBT, has got support from powerful allies like the ARC - and if you support the idea and can make it to Hamilton tonight, the organisers will be appreciative.

The organisers handed out 1500 flyers at the weekend alone,  have been running a local radio ad campaign and there are now 25 CBT members in Hamilton, showing this isn’t solely an Auckland push.

They’re battling the anti-railers, which seem to be led by the city’s sole main daily paper.  Last week, the Waikato Times tried to publish a premature death notice for the campaign,  reporting under the ominous heading “Rail plan train wreck” on the previous day’s transport committee meeting of the Hamilton City Council:

The Hamilton City Council’s transport committee yesterday admitted defeat over plans to trial the commuter service after the latest KiwiRail proposal revealed the cost would be more than double the $450,000 figure it earlier indicated. The council was left as the main funder of the service after the NZ Transport Agency and Environment Waikato refused to chip in…The council earlier rejected a proposal for a three-month trial costing up to $400,000, saying it was too short a time to allow marketing and operation of the service.

Kiwirail has been dangling the spare Silver Fern railcars in front of those contemplating the service but there’s the cost of refurbishment.

Labour MP Sue Moroney has been campaigning well for the Waikato -Auckland rail link saying Hamilton is our fourth-largest city and it is 120kms away from Auckland (largest city). “Now where else in the developed world would you find that situation with a railway line between the two, the Government owning the railways and the train but still no passenger train service between the two?” She has written labour party blog posts asking why National doesn’t get it.

She’s referring to local National MP, David Bennett, who has been singing the praises of improvements to the Waikato Expressway as if that’s the best way to get between the cities.

CBT’s Jon Reeves confirms that Mr Bennett will be attending tonight.

Hamilton City Council has been supportive but the regional council seems to be locked into the belief road transport and Hamilton’s bus service are where the focus needs to be for local transport.

What’s needed is for the government and transport agency to come to the party and support the council to make it happen.

Let’s hope the CBT can give this one last push with massive public support to save the idea tonight. Details of the meeting are in my earlier post.

Related Posts

  1. Big Meeting To Get Waikato Rail Link Resolved
  2. Waikato’s Regional Council Says No To Funding Hamilton Rail
  3. Waikato Rail Plan Moves One More cm Along The Track - Maybe
  4. Petition Launched For Waikato Train Service
  5. Political Storm Hits Decision On Waikato Rail




  1. CieraT says:

    It’s now or never! Like any new service, it will need a bit of support and time to get the public to use it, but there’s no reason why it can’t pay its own way in a few years with patronage growth and a fare increase 3 or so years down the track.

    NZTA and Environment Waikato, it’s time to front up and help get this service going before we lose the Silver Fern units to somewhere a bit more organised!!!

  2. Harry says:

    I would come to the meeting if there was a train to take me there


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