The report on Inter-regional passenger rail in Aotearoa is out. It looks good on the surface but the devil is in the detail and the proof will be money and action.
Excellent comments Darren, particularly those about KiwiRail (a conflicted organisation, if ever I saw one) and the failure to consider Te Wai Pounamu. Perhaps it should have been called The North Island Inter-regional Rail Inquiry?
Yeah, only one paragraph that I could find on rail in the South Island. And that was about needing to look at passenger rail potential there. I am sure that the Select Committee got plenty about South Island passenger rail potential from the submissions.
National and ACT did not put up a robust case against passenger rail - just some misrepresentation of Te Huia and 'subsidies' (ignoring the massive subsidies for road transport and that fare recovery on Te Huia is almost double what was expected), and an "oh look, buses".
Thanks Darren. Very useful summary and detail. Ironic isn't it that National's slogan at the moment is "Get NZ back on track." When what it actually means is "Get NZ back on the road."