Train sta­tion set to re­ceive a $5m trans­for­ma­tion

Manukau Courier - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - CHRIS HARROWELL

A ne­glected part of South Auck­land’s pub­lic trans­port net­work is in line for a ma­jor up­grade.

Ma­nurewa Lo­cal Board and Auck­land Trans­port have each com­mit­ted to spend $2.5 mil­lion to im­prove Te Mahia train sta­tion.

Board chair­woman An­gela Dalton says she’s ‘‘ec­static’’ about the de­vel­op­ment.

The up­grade will likely in­clude fea­tures such as bet­ter se­cu­rity cam­eras and light­ing, new pas­sen­ger shel­ters, and ‘‘pos­si­bly’’ an elec­tric bar­rier, she says.

‘‘It’s about part­ner­ships, fis­cal pru­dence and plan­ning,’’ she says.

‘‘When ev­ery­one works to­gether this is what can be achieved. We’re con­tin­u­ing to dis­cuss with the coun­cil the value of pro­vid­ing ad­di­tional fi­nan­cial sup­port for other cap­i­tal im­prove­ments to open up the sta­tion.’’

One lo­cal who’s cel­e­brat­ing the news is Don Hug­gins.

‘‘I look at the amount of peo­ple who will use this sta­tion to go shop­ping or to [Mid­dle­more] hos­pi­tal,’’ he says.

‘‘This is the direct route to hos­pi­tal for older peo­ple. Peo­ple still need to go from point A to point B and this will take the over­flow from Ma­nurewa train sta­tion.’’

Ma­nurewa-Takanini Ward coun­cil­lor Daniel New­man says he sup­ports the board’s ef­forts.

‘‘The two sta­tions that have not been up­graded are Te Mahia and Takanini. That needs to change and it will change quickly.’’

New­man says trans­port in­fra­struc­ture in Ma­nurewa needs to be im­proved to ac­count for fu­ture pop­u­la­tion growth.

‘‘There will be a lot more peo­ple liv­ing and work­ing close by. We can’t just al­low for that growth with­out im­prov­ing trans­port choice for ... res­i­dents.’’

Auck­land Trans­port’s Mark Han­nan says the agency is look­ing at resur­fac­ing the sta­tion’s plat­form to im­prove drainage, and adding yel­low tac­tile pave­ment mark­ings to it.

It’s also con­sid­er­ing a new pas­sen­ger shel­ter, a pub­lic ad­dress sys­tem, pas­sen­ger in­for­ma­tion and more com­pre­hen­sive CCTV cov­er­age, he says.

‘‘As an­other safety mea­sure we’re look­ing at a 1.8 me­tre perime­ter fence to al­low the sta­tion to be closed af­ter hours, and up­grad­ing the pedes­trian level cross­ing to in­clude an elect- ron­i­cally-gated sys­tem that ac­ti­vates when a train ap­proaches.’’

De­sign work on the up­grade will be­gin soon with con­struc­tion set to start in the first half of 2018.

‘‘It's about part­ner­ships, fis­cal pru­dence and plan­ning.’’

CHRIS HARROWELL

From left, Ma­nurewa Lo­cal Board chair­woman An­gela Dalton, lo­cal res­i­dent Don Hug­gins, and Ma­nurewa-Pa­pakura Ward coun­cil­lor Daniel New­man.

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