Johnsonville Angst


Ohariu-based Labour List MP Charles Chauvel is demanding an explanation from Tranz Metro owner KiwiRail after complaints that Johnsonville Train commuters were denied a replacement service last Friday.

He says he has been waiting a week now and had no response at all.

“I received complaints from Johnsonville locals who last Friday had difficulties getting to work on time, as no replacement service was provided while the Johnsonville train line was being checked. I have been informed that replacement buses were available for those on the Paraparaumu line that same morning.”

After nearly a week of promises by KiwiRail staff, no responses to my enquiries have been forthcoming.”

Johnsonville station

“Residents  expect a service that is no less effective than that which others in Wellington receive. It is disappointing that KiwiRail can’t - or won’t - even respond to enquiries about service levels.

“I feel sorry for residents who appear to have been short-changed by KiwiRail, and I share their frustration that on the day their fares increased due to GST, they got a decidedly second class service.”




  1. Kegan says:

    There are reasonably frequent buses from J’ville & much of Khandallah to the city. There aren’t from Paraparaumu. Trying to charter large numbers of buses for train replacements during the peak is difficult as most buses are in use. Do you use the limited resource providing a service to those that have an alternative public transport route or to those that do not? Tranz Metro chose the latter.

    On a slightly related note, it’s about time that Tranz Metro had another couple of free days and discounts off the next month’s monthly …

  2. Matt L says:

    Kegan - at least Kiwirail puts on free days after periods with bad disruption. In Auckland we have never had one despite having far more issues

  3. Ian says:

    Jon, you may have already mentioned that bridge No2 on the J’ville line has been replaced by an embankment. The embankment was built by driving piles beside the bridge to create a wall and then back filling. This was necessary to allow a better entry of the track into No2 tunnel.
    The Matangi recently tried out on the J’ville line and everything went well. No reported problems with slip, acceleration or braking on the steep grades. Matangi is being loaded with 24 tonnes of weights before setting off again on another test run.

  4. Geoff says:

    I agree with Kegan. Where exactly were Kiwirail supposed to find all these buses to replace the Johnsonville line trains, let alone the bus drivers to run them?? Especially with most buses in use during peak hour.

    They had enough trouble trying to find them for the Paraparaumu line!!

    At least Johnsonville has bus services going to and from Wellington on a regular basis, which is more than I can say for Paraparaumu passengers.

    Besides, Johnsonville is a hell of a lot closer to Wellington than Paraparaumu, so you provide services for the passengers that need it the most.

    Anybody could have figured out this information, without having to demand it from Kiwirail. Think with your brain people, its what its there for…lol

  5. Geoff B says:

    For the 24 tonnes of weights, why not just invite railfans along for the ride. They’ll fill the train nicely! Recently in the states, a passenger railroad wanted to test new locomotives with loaded test trains, so did just that - invited the public along for a free ride.


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