Construction at Paraparaumu and
Waikanae to start in June’By Graeme Trask
19th May 2010
Major upgrades on Waikanae and Paraparaumu Railway Stations are expected to take place in June in preparation for the new commuters trains that will be arriving next year.
At Paraparaumu a second platform will be built on the other side of the tracks, and an underpass will connect the existing road subway with the new platform, replacing the current overbridge. The new platform will include a small station building.
In Waikanae a new 200 metre long platform will be built at the current station location. A second car park will be created to the east of the tracks, with a new pedestrian level crossing connecting it to the station. A new station building, similar to that at Paraparaumu, will include a ticket office, waiting area and toilets. The final layouts of both buildings are still being determined.
Both stations are being upgraded as part of the Wellington Region Rail Programme, a joint initiative to improve passenger rail services by KiwiRail and Greater Wellington Regional Council. This includes the extension of double tracking and electrification to enable regular Tranz Metro commuter services to reach Waikanae in early 2011.
It is expected that the works on both stations will take up to seven months to complete.
KiwiRail’s Wellington rail upgrade director David Gordon said, “It is never easy turning a busy station into a construction site but I hope passengers can bear with us over the coming months. The feedback we’ve had on other stations we’ve improved elsewhere on the Wellington network, tells us that the results are worth it.”
The staging of the works means a number of changes will be made to car parks at both stations during construction but where possible KiwiRail will arrange alternative car parking near by.
And Mr Gordon says,“There are a couple of items including landscaping around Waikanae station and design of the Elizabeth Street crossing which we are still finalising with Kapiti Coast District Council but this should not delay the initial earthworks.”
Chair of Greater Wellington Regional Council’s Transport and Access Committee, Peter Glensor says the station upgrades, along with the double tracking and electrification to Waikanae, and the new trains which will begin running on the line from the middle of next year, would greatly enhance train travel for Kapiti residents.
Mr Glensor said “These are very substantial improvements to the Kapiti rail network that will make taking the train a more attractive, convenient and easy option for a lot more people. And that’s great news for traffic congestion, our health and our air.”