Newmarket Train Station, New Zealand

Newmarket Train Station
MAXX Urban rail
ADC 858 past Platform 1 at Newmarket.jpg
ADL DMU passing Platform 1 of the new Newmarket station
Station statistics
Address Remuera Road, Newmarket, Auckland City
Coordinates 36°52′11″S 174°46′44″E / 36.8696262°S 174.7788817°E / -36.8696262; 174.7788817
Lines North Auckland Line
Newmarket Branch
Levels 2
Platforms Island platforms, 180m[1]
Tracks Mainline (2),
Other (1)[1]
Parking No
Bicycle facilities Yes
Baggage check No
Other information
Opened 1873[2]
Closed January 2008
Rebuilt January 2008 - 2010
Electrified No
Owned by ONTRACK and ARTA
Formerly Newmarket Junction
Traffic
Passengers (2009) 3,489/day
17,000/day (projected for 2016)[3]
Services
    ONTRACK    
Preceding station   MAXX (Veolia)   Following station
Terminus
Southern Line
toward Pukekohe
Western Line
Grafton
toward Waitakere
Onehunga Line
toward Onehunga
The old station in 2007, from Remuera Road.

Newmarket Train Station is located in the Auckland, New Zealand suburb of Newmarket, on the Southern and Western Lines of the Auckland railway network. Serving the busy commercial centre of Newmarket, the station is the second-busiest train station in Auckland, after Britomart.[4] All express services stop here, including the Pukekohe and Waitakere expresses.[5]

In its historic configuration, it had an island platform, reached by a ramp from Remuera Road (opposite Nuffield Street) and from the end of Joseph Banks Terrace by a pedestrian overbridge. In 2008 the station was removed, and a new station constructed on the same site over two years. From January 2010 the new and extended train station caters for increased train patronage of up to 17,000 passengers a day by 2016[1] and has more entrances. During the redevelopment two temporary stations served the area: Newmarket West (also called Kingdon Street) and Newmarket South (both now demolished).

Contents

History

Historical station

The old railway station building was one of four island platform stations in Auckland designed and built by George Troup, Chief Engineer for the New Zealand Railways Department. The station was built in 1908,[1] at the time of the installation of double track. Before closure, the head of the Newmarket Business Association had compared the situation at the dilapidated station as akin to Whangamomona, a railway ghost town in Taranaki, adding to the calls for a redevelopment of the station.[3]

The signal box at the north end of the platform was built at the same time and was one of the few of that era in New Zealand on its original site and still in operation. It closed in early 2008 as part of project DART, being the last full sized lever frame signal boxes on the national network.

This former track layout of the station, near Newmarket Junction (the junction of the Western and Southern Lines) forced some unusual movements. Prior to the station's redevelopment, trains coming from Britomart had to run past the junction to call at this station. With the old station having had two platforms in an island configuration, for many years all city-bound trains stopped at one platform, with outwards trains stopping at the other platform. This was confusing as the outward-bound platform served all trains on both the Southern and Western Lines. This problem was solved by 'splitting' the platform into two: Southern Line trains stopped at the southern end of the platform, Western Line at the northern end. However the platform was short, so that this did not always resolve the confusion.

The above practice had become less prevalent following the higher frequency of the July 2007 timetable. From then on the signal person typically directed trains to whichever platform was free at the time of arrival. That meant any trains could arrive at any platform without any indication of destination. Off-peak, the signaling would usually follow the traditional practice, but during the peak this was not practical. This led to problems of passenger confusion as to which train ran on which line.

During peak times Veolia staff were often present with megaphones to inform passengers of trains destinations. The signal box was attended 24 hours per day and had control of all trains within the station and Junction.[citation needed]

Backshunt

For many years Western Line trains had to reverse into a special siding, which then allowed them to enter the Western Line (to Waitakere) or the Southern Line (to Newmarket). In July 2007 the "backshunt" procedure ceased to be necessary, with the start of the station's rebuilding as part of Project DART.

Historic station building

The fate of the historically and architecturally significant old station building is controversial, with various proposals having been put forward to demolish, refurbish, or relocate the building. Following the announcement on 14 March 2007 of the budget for the station's upgrade,[6] Minister of Finance Michael Cullen announced that $5 million would be put towards moving the station building, possibly to a new site in Parnell[7] where it could serve as a station for the Auckland War Memorial Museum in the Auckland Domain. The station building and signal box were removed from the site on 3 March 2008. The storage location was not disclosed, as ONTRACK fears the buildings could be vandalised.[8]

Redeveloped station

Newmarket station was rebuilt for NZ$35 million as part of ONTRACKs Project DART.[1][9] As well as modernising the station's facilities and appearance, the redevelopment improved connections between the station and the surrounding commercial and residential areas. The station now has a concourse level above the platforms, and entrances from a new square off Broadway, a 65m long covered bridge (capable of carrying emergency vehicles) off Remuera Road, and a pedestrian bridge from Joseph Banks Terrace, from the Remuera side.[1]

The station retains the option of extending the concourse, with further pedestrian entries off Broadway further north possible. The current entrance off Broadway may also be widened, with Council considering demolishing two shops to widen the passage.[1] Some criticism was made at the time of opening about the relatively high step up onto train carriages, which was considered necessary by the designers to allow freight trains to pass the station's platform. However, authorities noted that this was the same height as at other stations throughout the Auckland system with the exception of Britomart, which does not have freight trains passing through it. Authorities confirmed the vertical distance to step up to some train carriages would be up to 374mm, but this would be reduced with new carriages specifically designed for the Auckland network, which are to be introduced with electrification.[9]

New track layout
Newmarket West, one of two temporary stations that served the area while the new station was being built.
Newmarket South, the other of the temporary stations.

Integral to the redevelopment was the requirement to reorganise the trackwork servicing the station. The new station has twin island platforms with three tracks.[7] The outer faces of each platform serve Southern Line trains, the inner faces on the centre track Western Line trains in both directions. The station cost an estimated NZ$25 million to redevelop (paid for by ARTA), and ONTRACK spent around NZ$45 million to change the layout. The project has been called the most challenging in the whole upgrade of Auckland's railway network.[7]

Western Line trains reverse direction to leave the station, requiring the driver to get out and walk to the other end of the train and adding about two to three minutes to each trip.[10][11]

Pedestrian access

The new station has access points to the concourse built above the platforms along a rebuilt bridge from Remuera Road (southern side) and via a bridge from Joseph Banks Terrace from the Remuera (eastern) side. Future accesses will be via a plaza between the new buildings that were erected during the late 2000s on former railway land between Broadway and Remuera Road (western side) and via a possible future access from the Broadway (northwest) side over an extended concourse to the north of the station, linking up with the main street over the existing tunnel south of the Olympic Pools area.[7]

Awards

The station's lighting design engineer (Opus International Consultants) won three New Zealand IES Lighting design awards in 2010 for the station's lighting design. Awards received included an Award of Excellence, Award of Commendation and the Trends People's Choice Award for the innovative LED lantern box design on Remuera road.

The station and it's architects (Opus and Herriot + Melhuish:Architecture) won best building in the "Urban Design" category in 2011, awarded by the New Zealand Institute of Architects.[4]

Temporary stations

During the station redevelopment two temporary stations were built to service the area: Newmarket West (also called Kingdon Street) on the Western Line and Newmarket South on the Southern Line.[12] Both stations were demolished in December 2009/January 2010 just prior to the reopening of Newmarket station in January 2010.

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Dearnaley, Mathew (11 December 2009). "Open day to show off new world-class station". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/transport/news/article.cfm?c_id=97&objectid=10614714&pnum=0. Retrieved 11 December 2009. 
  2. ^ "[Untitled mixed news items"]. The Evening Post. 4 February 1873. http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/cgi-bin/paperspast?a=d&cl=search&d=EP18730204.2.5&srpos=6&e=-------100--1-byDA---2parnell+tunnel--. Retrieved 12 January 2011. 
  3. ^ a b "$35million rail station gets great public feedback". News & events. Newmarket Business Association. 8 February 2010. http://www.newmarket.co.nz/63/news/1/item/745/. Retrieved 15 February 2010. 
  4. ^ a b "HOP Highlight in Public Transport Report". Auckland Transport. 29 June 2011. http://www.aucklandtransport.govt.nz/about-us/News/LatestNews/Pages/monthly-public-transport-patronage-report-may2011.aspx. Retrieved 11 July 2011. 
  5. ^ Millar, Sean (2005). Passenger Railway Stations of Auckland's Southern Line, 2005.
  6. ^ Dearnaley, Mathew (14 March 2007). "Delight at Government's decision to reopen Onehunga line". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10428642. Retrieved 2009-12-06. 
  7. ^ a b c d Dearnaley, Mathew (1 November 2007). "Ambitious design for rail junction". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10473321&pnum=0. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  8. ^ Dearnaley, Mathew (5 March 2008). "Station lifted to secret location". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10496187. Retrieved 2008-03-05. 
  9. ^ a b Dearnaley, Mathew (18 January 2010). "Big step up at Newmarket's $35m station". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/transport/news/article.cfm?c_id=97&objectid=10620754. Retrieved 22 January 2010. 
  10. ^ Rudman, Brian (30 November 2009). "Let's have an extra stop for shopping". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10612409&pnum=0. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  11. ^ Dearnaley, Mathew (22 January 2010). "Train chiefs admit extra drivers needed". The New Zealand Herald. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10621601&pnum=0. Retrieved 22 January 2010. 
  12. ^ "Newmarket station upgrade - important changes for train users". Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind. http://www.rnzfb.org.nz/newsandevents/latestnews/Newmarket%20Train%20Station%20Upgrade. Retrieved 22 January 2010. [dead link]

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