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Action Called For Over Airport Rail Petition

Media Release From The Campaign for Better Transport

11 March 2008: For Immediate Release

Action Called For Over Airport Rail Petition

A petition calling for a rail link from downtown Auckland to Auckland Airport will be presented to the Auckland Regional Council tomorrow [Wednesday 12th March].

Petition organisers the Campaign for Better Transport have collected over 10,000 signatures in a little over four months. Over 2,000 of those signatures came from the campaign’s website www.bettertransport.org.nz.

"Having spoken to thousands of people, we can truly say that support for the idea is overwhelming. In fact most people ask why we need a petition to do this," says petition organiser Jon Reeves.

Convenor or the Campaign for Better Transport, Cameron Pitches, says there are plenty of challenges ahead before rail to the airport will happen.

“The most challenging aspect of the whole campaign so far was going to the Environment Court, where we had to convince Transit, along with officials from the ARC and Manukau City Council, of the need to preserve a rail corridor to the airport alongside the soon-to-be expanded motorway at Mangere.

"The next challenge is going to be getting Auckland’s transport agencies to act on the petition."

A report on possible future rapid transport links to the airport is due shortly from the Auckland Regional Transport Authority.

Rising oil prices, which today reached an all time high of $US108 a barrel, are adding further urgency to the campaign.

"The beauty about expanding rail to the airport is that it won't just provide people flying in and out of the airport with a reliable connection to the city, but it will also provide thousands of commuters in the airport region with an alternative to their cars. Higher oil prices are going to drive more and more people to public transport, and we need to expand our passenger rail network and its capacity as a matter of the utmost priority," concludes Mr Pitches.


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