A RAIL AT KI­WIRAIL

The Tribune (NZ) - - VIEWS / CONVERSATIONS -

Kiwi Rail and the Gov­ern­ment seem to have their thoughts back­wards.

They are draw­ing out the fi­nal de­ci­sion on the Cap­i­tal Con­nec­tion train ser­vice be­tween Welling­ton and Palmer­ston North. The pas­sen­gers aboard this ser­vice need to make de­ci­sions on their fu­tures re trans­porta­tion and jobs, but can’t be­cause the pow­ers to be won’t make up their minds on whether the ser­vice will con­tinue or be can­celled.

But when it came to ex­tend­ing the time frame to a pro­posal to lease the Napier-to-Gis­borne line to a group of fi­nan­cial and for­mer rail­way peo­ple over­seen by the Hawke’s Bay Re­gional Coun­cil, Kiwi Rail choose to not ex­tend the time .

The de­ci­sion seems back-tofront, be­cause there are no ser­vices on the line, so it doesn’t mat­ter when a de­ci­sion is made. My un­der­stand­ing is that the pro­posal put for­ward was sound and eco­nom­i­cally vi­able.

The group needed only three months to dot their I’s and cross their T’s on the pro­posal, but were stopped in their tracks from do­ing that, while the pas­sen­gers on the Cap­i­tal Con­nec­tion train ser­vice still don’t know the fate of their ser­vice, which should have been de­cided by now.

To Ki­wiRail andGovern­ment, get your act to­gether.

Ei­ther run a train to Waikanae or Welling­ton or put on a bus ser­vice, or with­draw it all to­gether and let the pas­sen­gers find their own way to Welling­ton but get on with it.

And al­low the group wish­ing to lease the moth­balled Napier to Gis­borne sec­tion of the Palmer­ston North to Gis­borne rail­way line fin­ish their fi­nan­cial pro­posal, and then sit down with them and nut out the nuts and bolts of this sub­mis­sion. It was a wrong de­ci­sion made by Ki­wiRail, but they are the owner on the track.

Ian Franklin, Palmer­ston North

The drawn-out de­ci­sion-mak­ing process over the fu­ture of the Cap­i­tal Con­nec­tion is af­fect­ing long-term trans­port ar­range­ments for the train’s com­muters.

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