ChCh Tram Work Continues


Christchurch’s authorities are going to take advantage of the work being done in the wake of the quake to start planned tram extension work early.

Tram tracks will be laid across the Manchester Street/Lichfield Street intersection from Tuesday week.

The Christchurch City Council approved the extension of the Christchurch tram route on 30 June 2009 and included funding for the project in its Long Term Council Community Plan 2009-19. Tram tracks have already been laid in City Mall as part of the revitalisation of the Central City pedestrian precinct.

Road closures are already currently in place on Manchester Street as a result of the earthquake.

The work will be carried out in three phases with the aim of keeping at least one lane of Lichfield Street open at all times.

Two sections of tram track will be laid – a curved rail running from High Street east into Lichfield Street and a straight section running diagonally across the intersection along High Street. The first phase of work will be laying the curved section of rail.

Council’s Project Management Unit Manager Christian Anderson says the decision to start the intersection work this month meant there would be less disruption to traffic.

The road closure further north on Manchester Street has significantly reduced the amount of traffic using the intersection. It makes sense to do the work now and cause the least amount of disruption,” he says.

“We will work as quickly as possible to complete this work, and keep businesses and road users up-to-date with road information and progress reports.

“Tram work elsewhere in the city is now progressing well, after stopping for a time following the 4 September earthquake. Despite this pause, we are still on schedule to complete the work on stage one, as far as the Tuam Street/High Street corner, in time for Rugby World Cup 2011.”

Tram work is now being carried out in three areas of the Central City – Oxford Terrace, Poplar Street and High Street between Cashew Street and Lichfield Street.




  1. Andy says:

    Not that any locals will use it with those ridiculous prices…

  2. Jon C says:

    @Andy yes $17 ($5 kids) is very steep.

  3. Joyce Is Wrong says:

    Don’t the locals have a cheap annual pass?

  4. greenwelly says:

    Annual tram pass ( and gondola) $50 per adult

  5. Andy says:

    Oh I’m glad there is at least SOMETHING then. However for the casual user or if you just happen to be in Christchurch for a few days it’s still not good enough.

    As a Kiwi, I wasn’t going to be roped into paying that much for the tram when at Motat they are even free on certain days! (I know they aren’t that comparable but still, $17?)

  6. Anthony says:



    with all the other exspenes in NZ. and the govt wonders why record amounts of people are moving to australia?

  7. sam says:

    Actually you can get an annual pass for $50….seems pretty smart as you can charge attraction prices to those using it as a destination, while still been able to charge low prices for those who use it as transport to work each day. 50 dollars a year for unlimited transport in the city is really reasonable… next best thing to the city curcuit (not that anyone would pay for the shocking service we get from the curcuit ATM)

  8. Andy says:

    @sam - Yes greenwelly pointed that out which is why I said there is nothing there for Kiwi travellers.

    Call me a cheepo but I don’t think many backpackers would fork out $17 for a ride around Christchurch either.

  9. willuknight says:

    the tram doesnt work for public transport because it doesnt use the metrocard (unlike everything else in christchurch) and when riding it you have to listen to the tourist sightseeing prattle constantly which gets annoying after a time. If it was going to be used by commuters they should put that onto headphones only.

  10. Andy says:

    And while we are on the topic, I was curious about how much patronage the tram gets? Maybe they are making enough to get by without extra passengers?

  11. karl says:

    “However for the casual user or if you just happen to be in Christchurch for a few days it’s still not good enough.”

    Its not currently intended for locals. Its a heritage feature, and there to provide rides to tourists and enthusiasts, and to give the area some flavour. As the tram gets extended, it will slowly attract more local business, and one day may even become a real transport choice again.

    “Call me a cheepo but I don’t think many backpackers would fork out $17 for a ride around Christchurch either.”

    Not unless they are die-hard tram fans. But that may not be their market either. More older and richer tourists, I’d say, and maybe upmarket package tours. They love those kind of local heritage trips.

  12. Andy says:

    Karl, I realise all these things and that’s exactly why I was curious as to how much business they currently get. I guess I’m curious as to why they don’t extend their business to a much larger market. If they they are getting plenty of business and making profit then fair enough I guess.

    It seems nobody knows?


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