Consultation on the design of the new Drury stations

Yesterday Kiwirail announced a new consultation for two of the three stations they plan to build between Papakura and Pukekohe. They have already consulted on this subject at the beginning of last year with just some very high level information about station footprints and planned facilities. We have also seen others details in November last year. These designs have now been refined and with a bit more detail. The stations are expected to begin construction next year and be completed by the end of 2025.

Unfortunately, they do nothing to allay my concerns that these resorts are focused on rooting self-reliance in these pristine growing areas – despite all claims to the contrary.

The government, through the New Zealand Upgrade Program, has funded three new stations between Papakura and Pukekohe. The stations, which are expected to be completed in 2025, will be located at Drury Central, Drury West and Paerata. We are currently seeking comments on Drury Central and Paerata stations.

Planning approvals were granted for Paerata and Drury Central stations in early 2022 and planning approvals are currently sought for Drury West. To help connect with local residential areas, each of the stations will include a bus interchange, park-and-ride facilities, and walking and cycling trails. Up to 350 car parks at each of Drury Central and Paerata stations will be provided and up to 200 car parks at Drury West. People traveling to the stations are expected to live in a wide area including northern Waikato as well as towns and rural areas to the west and east.

New road access roads will also be developed which will connect the stations to the adjacent arteries. Waka Kotahi has projects on these thoroughfares that will improve access to existing and future residential areas. All three stations are future proofed to provide a number of features including space for additional rail tracks and longer platforms for nine car trains.

We would like to know your opinion on the development of road access and car parks at these two stations. We do not solicit comments on the station buildings or platforms, as these are built to a design standard and there is no possibility of change. We want to hear about any issues you see on the designs and any suggestions for improvement. You can let us know any issues or suggestions you have on the designs by writing your point with an arrow indicating which location on the map you are referring to. If you have any other comments, please use the any other comments area of ​​the feedback form.

We work closely with our partners at Mana Whenua on station design, including reflecting the region’s history in the design of station buildings. We will continue to work with the Mana Whenua partners as we finalize all aspects of the project.

Drury Station (Drury Central)

The station will be located along Gt South Rd, just south of Wahoehoe Rd.

My big concern with this resort is that they seem to have been designed to make access as difficult as possible from the new accommodations planned for the area, unless those residents are driving. The park-and-ride facility to the east of the station occupies valuable land, pushing any dwellings at least a few hundred meters from the station. A similar impact will be created by the wetland south of the station.

Although I’m not usually a big fan of P&R facilities, they serve on the urban outskirts to serve neighboring rural areas. However, here there are two changes that are needed to help ensure that priority access to premises is by bus or active modes:

  1. The location should be moved to the north side of Waihoehoe Rd to allow for more accommodation closer to the station. This would still be a similar distance to the P&R facilities at Glen Eden and Sunnyvale or the P&R end of Albany and certainly does not preclude their use.
  2. Pricing for its use should be a condition of its construction and should therefore be committed in advance.

I’m also wondering if there is a way to get this bus interchange to Gt South Rd. Seems weird to have two different sets of bus facilities, the one east of the station probably only useful only to serve “local rambler” type routes. Combining the bus interchange facility on Gt South Rd would free up additional land.

One thing the design lacks in particular is that any trail on the design’s lack is a trail on the P&R side of the access road. It’s something that was shown in drawings from last yearwhich also had bicycle lanes on either side of the road corridor.

There is one good thing about the plans though, namely that it looks like it is designed with around 300 bike parks. Although they emphasize that this design is only indicative and subject to change, it is a pity that they are not covered. – definitely something to provide feedback on.

I still find it disappointing how far this station has strayed from the original vision of 2019 Drury-Opaheke Structure Plan showing a station surrounded by a square and a town centre.

All centers should aim to ensure a mix of uses. Figure 3 illustrates a larger conceptual mixed-use center with apartments, townhouses, commercial buildings, stores, parks, and public transportation. Section 3.13 specifies the expected results for these centers

This is the most recent blueprint design we’ve seen, but it’s definitely different from what we see above. In addition, it has moved the city center away from the station and some car parks have emphasized large areas.

A major development is planned for the area south of Drury Central Station.

Paerata

The layout of Paerātā station is also quite similar to what we saw last year, except for a few more roundabouts. Here, the majority of housing development occurs to the northwest of the station, which means that users in active mode will have more direct access to the station than those accessing the P&R, which should be the case. Although the station could do with a bit more bike parking on this side.

Longer term this new road is expected to connect to Sim Rd and given this I wonder if the road should be slightly closer to the station with bus stops directly above the station and access to the platform directly from the upper deck – similar to how Park Rd interacts with Grafton Station. This would allow buses to be routed eventually instead of looping in and out of the station.

As a reminder, this is the Paerata Rise development master plan and the road above that crosses the rail corridor is the southernmost black line.

As with Drury, the render suggests more needs to be done to cover bike racks.

It looks like the land will allow direct access to the upper deck of the station which is nice and makes me wonder if for these two stations I’m also wondering if the stations we could use accessibility compliant ramps at the instead of relying on elevators that not only cost more to operate but have a regular tendency to break down leaving some of the most vulnerable customers stranded. There certainly seems to be enough space in these stations for the ramps.

Kiwirail is still working on its plans for Drury West station which requires planning approval and which developer fights in court because he wants the station to be moved to mainly benefit its development.

Consultation links can be found here. There are also in-person and online presentations to come.

Sunday November 27, 2022 10am-1pm
Rise and Shine Cafe
(16 Jonah Lomu Street, Paerata)

Sunday, December 10, 2022 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Drury Hall, 10 Tui Street, Drury

Thursday December 1st 7:30-8:30 p.m.

Online presentation with questions and answers (The link to this presentation will be online soon.)

Closing of the consultation on December 17.


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Rozella J. Cook