Rapid transit forms the backbone of Auckland’s public transport network.
It provides fast, frequent and high capacity services along corridors separated from general traffic and is therefore not affected by road congestion.
Auckland’s rapid transit network barely existed a decade ago, but now carries over 26 million passengers a year, with use continuing to grow strongly.
This is a result of investment in:
- rail electrification and new trains
- track and station upgrades
- construction of the Northern Busway.
The rapid transit network will need to play a central role in meeting the travel needs of a fast-growing region, as well as supporting and shaping Auckland’s growth and urban form.
In particular, only rapid transit can:
- efficiently move large numbers of people to intensely developed places like the city centre and other major centres
- dramatically increase the number of people able to travel between major parts of Auckland (north, central, west and south)
- provide a fast and reliable travel option that encourages people out of their cars for longer-distance journeys
- deliver long-lasting access improvements to areas near rapid transit stations, which improves their attractiveness for redevelopment.
Major improvements to Auckland’s rapid transit network are necessary for it to meet these requirements. In particular, large parts of Auckland are still not served by rapid transit, while existing parts of the network will need to be upgraded to meet future demand.
We may expand or upgrade the rapid transit network through bus improvements, light rail, heavy rail or frequent ferry services.
This will depend on forecast levels of demand, integration with the existing network and cost-effectiveness.
The map below provides an indication of the location and likely mode of Auckland’s future rapid transit network: