Aesthetic safety solution
A further step in preparing Auckland’s rail network for the new electric trains is under way with the installation of safety screens on road and pedestrian bridges crossing the rail network around Auckland.
The yellow, grey and white screens, designed for KiwiRail by Adam Ellis of Pollen Design, are one of a range of measures being put in place as part of the Auckland Electrification Project to ensure public safety.
Auckland Electrification Project manager Nicholas French says the overhead wires that will power the new trains will conduct electricity 100 times more powerful than that used in homes.
‘‘The overhead system is designed to ensure people doing ordinary things near them will be safe, and these screens are a critical part of that.’’
There are 87 bridges crossing the rail network and the screens are being bolted onto the sides of these to ensure people do not accidentally come into contact with these wires.
KiwiRail has worked closely with Auckland Council’s public art team from early on in the pro ject to develop the design for the screens, which will be used all around Auckland.
‘‘Screening of structures elsewhere in the country has been fit for purpose, so we were very pleased to work with the council to find a more aesthetic solution that still met all the necessary technical requirements for these structures.’’
KiwiRail and Auckland Council consulted with stakeholders and the overall response has been very positive.
The angular aspect of the modular design makes them difficult to climb on and they are made of a material that is durable.
Safety first: Auckland Council public arts team project co-ordinator Kim Martinengo discusses the new screens at the Dominion Rd overbridge with Eden–Albert Local Board member Graham Easte, KiwiRail project manager Kevin McConnell and contractor representative Lee Stewart of Fulton Hogan.
Critical: The screens are designed to protect the public from overhead wires that will power new trains. The wires will conduct electricity 100 times more powerful than that used in homes.