Weekends Not For Regulars


Some regular rail commuters are in for two more weekends when they might be best using a car or other ways to get around.
Emails are already coming in to AKT complaining that they are again feeling like being treated like second-class citizens as it’s all about sports fans getting to Eden Park.
The February 19 Super 15 Blues vs Crusaders match at Eden Park was the first real dry run for the RWC 2011 and saw regulars caught by surprise because of a messy bus-train replacement which saw trains going to Morningside from the West and taking a short cut from Britomart to Kingsland to accommodate the rugby fans.

Commuters question officials at Morningside during the Feb 19 event

It’s now been noted on the Maxx site that the same is happening for the next 2 weekends.

Date: Saturday 12 and 19 March
Place: Between Britomart and Morningside Stations
Time: Approximately 4:30pm to 11:00pm

Due to the Warriors and Blues games at Eden Park, rail bus replacement services will be in place between Britomart Station and Morningside Station on 12 and 19 March.

Rail buses travelling from Britomart will continue west towards Waitakere after Morningside Station and will be drop off only from Morningside Station onwards.

Patrons travelling from between Britomart and Morningside to a train station west of Morningside Station will need to remain on the rail bus services for the full journey.

Here are the timetables: Morningside to Britomart

Britomart to Waitakere (Drop off ONLY to Morningside)

It’s understandable many of us are going to be put out of our routine in some way by the RWC.

That’s part of the deal of a city having to accommodate a major sporting event.

But here’s a bit of advice to the authorities based on the emails in here after the last event and today:

1. Your regulars keep your service profitable. Rugby fans get free travel and have no commitment to using rail or public transport on any other occasion. They might not even be from Auckland.

2. Piss your regulars off at your peril. They have chosen rail as their means to get around but tend to be vocal and march with their feet in protest as we have seen with fare rises on occasions.

3. Communicate. Regulars were badly caught short last time and got very frustrated if not angry. They won’t necessarily be hunting through Maxx’s not overly user-friendly site to find out if there any changes this and next weekend. Some use trains at the weekend because they have to work weekends, something they are already not happy about but need to ensure they get to work ontime on an already limited weekend timetable.

4. Is this really the only way to do this?




  1. Commuter says:

    This is quite unacceptable and something that should have been planned for when the decision was made to expand Eden Park; building a third line would have been the obvious response. However, this being Auckland, it’s all done on the cheap, especially when it comes to the provision of rail services and particularly when it involves the western suburbs (you could say Auckland’s version of Christchurch’s eastern suburbs). Some weeks back this serious inconvenience to Western line passengers was dismissed by AT with the comment that the narrowness of the rail corridor precluded such expansion; if that was the case then you tunnel it. Of course, one might have said the same in respect of the width of Sandringham Road but there the C&R regime at the previous Auckland City Council was quite happy to resume land to widen the road. So, once again, it’s road expansion good: rail expansion bad.

  2. Matt L says:

    I’m going to the Warriors game so it will be interesting to see how good or bad the communication is for regular users at Morningside and how many buses they have available.

    As a slightly separate note, they have listed that there are extra trains on for round the bays on Sunday yet seem to have once again had the assumption that everyone that lives past Henderson moves out of their houses on Sundays. It means if I want to catch the train to the event I have to do a 20-30 minute walk to Henderson to catch a train.

  3. Luke says:

    wouldnt it be much better having a bus that went direct from Britomart to Morningside to connect with the train?
    Seems silly having the train running from Morningside only, as well as a railbus.

  4. Joshua says:

    Well, I think that we should give them a little break, it’s important we get this right for the country during the RWC. A little disruption for the economic benefit of the country as a whole is worth it!

    Also although yes rugby fans travel free, it’s my understanding that Auckland Rugby etc, actually pay for these services? Therefore they would actually be supporting their biggest client, is this correct?

    But one thing I do agree the need to work on is communication, why have they not been able to get that right?

  5. richard says:

    This nonsense must stop after the RWC. Even though I have a Gold Card I am using my car to go to the city since my Big Day Out experience.

  6. Luke says:

    we really need to good patronage reports from Auckland Transport to get some good news.
    I have OIAed them so hopefully might get something soon, however the 20 days max is up today….


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