Guest comment from Isaac Broome
Having visited Edinburgh a couple of years ago, I was facinated to read about their city council now undertaking a project to build a modern light rail system:
Interesting to note that Edinburgh has a population of 450,000 and Auckland City also has a population of 450,000. With creation of the new Auckland Super City, the population will be over 1 million.
Light rail is definately a mode of public transport which needs to introduced into central Auckland to provide a cleaner, quieter, more efficient and attractive option of travelling around the city such as along the waterfront on Quay Street and Tamaki Drive between the Wynyard Quarter and St Heliers Bay, up Queen Street and out along Karangahape Road and Great North Road to Motat, and out along Upper Queen Street, Ian McKinnion Drive and Dominion Road to the Mt Roskill South shops on Richardson Road.
A light rail network along these routes would compliment the current heavy rail network and would be a truly attractive option for Aucklander’s to leave their cars at home for commuting or shopping in the central city and suburbs.
If the Auckland tram network were to be built to the standard gauge of 4′ 8″ (1435mm), this would enable Motat’s heritage trams to operate on the network as well making it much easier for Auckland to purchase new light rail trams on the international market.
This is not pie in the sky stuff, it is a very real practical, sensible transport option for Auckland and is a sustainable option as trams run on electricity and not reliant on expensive and ever decreasing overseas oil.
The new Auckland Council needs to make light rail a reality for Auckland. If Edinburgh can do it, so can Auckland.