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Trains back on Wairoa - Napier line

Trains will be moving again on the Napier to Wairoa line for the first time in six years next Wednesday.

“The project to re-open the line will pass a significant milestone when a work train travels up to Eskdale from Napier delivering ballast,” KiwiRail Chief Executive Peter Reidy says.

“Having work trains running is an important part of getting the line open to shift logs by rail and take trucks off the road.

“The line is expected to be ready for logging trains by the end of the year.

“This is also a good time to remind people of the need to take care around the rail line. Because it has not been in use by trains, people need to be aware that trains will now be on the line, and that they need to be looking out for them,” Mr Reidy says.

There will be a ceremony to mark the return of trains at KiwiRail’s operations depot in Ahuriri.

There are good vantage points for members of the public who are keen to see the train as it passes at Meeanee Quay and Domain Rd at around 11.30am.

The line is being re-opened by KiwiRail using $5 million of funding from the Government’s Provincial Growth Fund, and will be used to transport logs to Napier. The work is expected to take two years to fully complete.

“This is an important project for the region, for New Zealand and for KiwiRail. It lifts the regional economy. It makes the roads safer by taking logging trucks off roads that were not designed to cope with growing volumes. It helps the environment by cutting carbon emissions,” Mr Reidy says.

KiwiRail has estimated that using the Wairoa-Napier line to move the logs could take up to 5,714 trucks a year off the road, and cut carbon emissions by 1292 tonnes.

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