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New Train Rolls Online – With More to Come

New Train Rolls Online – With More to Come

23 April 2004

The first SA train for Auckland has been launched by the Hon. Dr Michael Cullen, the Minister of Finance, at a ceremony in central Auckland today.

The train has been completely stripped and re-built according to customised designs, and features a modern European-inspired interior and exterior.

The Auckland Regional Council Chair, Gwen Bull, says the train is comfortable, clean and attractive, and will improve the travelling experience for passengers.

“This sleek, modernised train will help relieve pressure over peak times, and as more SA trains are re-vamped and come into service, other trains can be taken off the tracks for refurbishment”.

Councillor Catherine Harland, Chair of the Passenger Transport Committee, says the ARC is working to transform the rail system into a modern, reliable and attractive option for travelling about the region.

“The train has been designed to accommodate peak passenger demands, and features large, centrally located doors for easy access, and modern heating, lighting and ventilation systems.

“When it begins services over the next few weeks, it will provide greater capacity for rush-hour travellers”, she says.

The Auckland Regional Council commissioned the construction of the SA trains in July last year, to address the chronic shortage of trains in the region.

The SA train construction forms part of the ARC’s interim rolling stock programme, which will meet interim passenger demands generated by improved services and infrastructure developments.

Late last year the Government approved a $61 million funding package for the programme, which also includes a major cosmetic and mechanical overhaul of the nine ADK trains currently running on the network. MORE

The SA Train project is being managed by Tranz Rail Limited, under contract to the ARC. The SA carriages were constructed at Tranz Rail’s Hillside Engineering Workshops in Dunedin, while the locomotives were over-hauled at Alstom’s Hutt Workshops.

The entire train was delivered on time and within budget.

Up to ten SA trains are due to be refurbished before the end of 2006. Each seats between 190-260 passengers, depending on the number of carriages, and will be powered by a single locomotive at one end, with a drive-cab at the other. Delivery of the first of the driving cabs is expected in September.

The ARC involved many parties in the design, and consulted vision and mobility impaired groups to ensure the trains are safe and comfortable for all users.

The second rebuilt SA Train will begin services in Auckland in July.

ENDS

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