geoff_184 wrote:We are talking about a realistic way to add a platform to the city, not demolishing the biggest buildings in Hamilton CBD to build some grand central station.
The biggest building that might need to be demolished would be a four story office block - nothing too particularly expensive.
geoff_184 wrote:Wellington's station is a kilometre walk to the middle of town, not 260m. Same with Auckland.
Geoff, Auckland's main station is right on Queen Street - most major workplaces in the Auckland CBD are less than a kilometre away (heck, there are plenty that are within 260 metres). Similar with Wellington Station - most of the workplaces in Wellington, if I am not mistaken, are along Lambton Quay - Wellington Station to the very end of Lambton Quay isn't even a kilometre (and again, I am pretty sure that there are plenty of workplaces within 260 metres of Wellington Station, granted not quite as many as in Auckland).
No, we are talking 260 metres. 260 metres is the same distance in all cities. People don't have shorter legs and smaller feet just because their city is smaller
Geoff, in the Hamilton CBD, parking is cheap, so parking 260 metres away from the corner of Victoria and Claudelands (you could still be a further 500 metres away from your place of work) is more of a deal than in the Auckland CBD where you need to take a second mortgage to pay for parking (or take the bus/train/ferry).
In short, it is about relative distance. Because parking is so expensive in the Auckland CBD, people are more willing to go further out to get cheap parking than in the Hamilton CBD where parking is cheap.
geoff_184 wrote:It's not adding anything. People already walk that 260m from the commuter car park to the CBD. And even greater distances from other car parks around the CBD area. Given that the trains will be coming from outlying towns like Huntly, Morrinsville and Te Awamutu, dropping them off 260m from the middle of town is very convenient. THat's closer to the middle of town than Britomart or Bunny St achieve for their cities, where the stations are a kilometre from the middle of town.
To address your last sentence first, the main train stations in Auckland and Wellington are not a kilometre from the middle of town. The main train station in Auckland is within a quarter kilometre of three "Big Four" Accounting Firms, several major legal firms, four major insurers, two major property services firms, two banks and the list goes on. It might not be as good in Wellington, but as mentioned above, it is less than a kilometre from Wellington Station to the very end of Lambton Quay.
In terms of the location not adding anything, it adds convenience - and that is very important when you are wanting to attract the self-loading freight, particularly given that congestion is virtually non existent in Hamilton and that parking is not all that expensive.
geoff_184 wrote:We are talking about whether or not it's easier to reopen the underground station, or site a new one in the open. One of those options will need to be pursued first in order to establish a basic system that can grow to the stage where a bigger proposal could be pursued. We all know Hamilton isn't going to go from nothing to a half billion dollar station project (which is what it would cost to pull down and rebuild two blocks worth of Hamilton's largest buildings). Personally I don't see that ever happening. Not even Auckland would attempt to tear down two blocks of buildings in its CBD for a PT project.
Except Geoff, Auckland did (granted, the two blocks were parking buildings and a bus terminal). In terms of the Hamilton idea, the most important thing isn't actually building the station, but it is ensuring that nothing gets in the way. You would probably only need to start looking at a new Hamilton Central Station once you are running roughly four trains per hour to Auckland (let us face it, you would not be starting off with Hamilton suburban services).