Frequently asked questions
The issue of flooding was a key factor when we assessed the proposed station locations in Kumeū and Huapai.
The location of the proposed Kumeū station was preferred, in part, as it is outside the flood-prone area and is adjacent to the existing town centre, which is not identified as flood prone. Notice of Requirements will be supported by a flooding assessment.
The transport infrastructure we are proposing will be designed to respond to forecast flood events and to treat and manage stormwater so that the risk of flooding is not increased.
Why does the RTC have a station proposed in central Kumeū and why does the RTC go through the town centre?
The community has expressed a desire for improved public transport in this area. A rapid transit corridor that connects Kumeū with Westgate and beyond will have a station in the town centre so that people can access employment, retail and community facilities, as well as homes nearby. The Kumeū-Huapai Centre Plan was developed to improve the form and function of the town centre area in the context of the wider growth that will occur.
The plan envisages a revitalised town centre with reduced traffic volumes to make the town centre accessible and safer, especially for people walking and cycling. The proposed Alternative State Highway around Kumeū will help achieve this, as people not planning on stopping in the town centre will not need to travel through it, but people travelling by public transport to and from the key destination of a town centre must be able to easily access it.
It is expected that rapid transit, in this case a dedicated busway, will be supported by a network of local bus routes and cycle routes so that people can readily access stations and people who live in or close to the town centre would be encouraged to consider walking to the station. * Pick up/drop off facilities will also be provided.
Park and rides are likely to continue to be provided away from the town centre, like the Huapai station, so that people who live further away can park their car and use the rapid transit service to get to their destination. Local buses will also serve this station.
*Research from bus stations on the Northern Busway states that walking was the most significant mode of travel for trips less than 2000 metres at three of five bus stations.
Why do we need a rapid transit corridor as well as an Alternative State Highway? Why not just build the Alternative State Highway?
The Alternative State Highway will be used by people who do not need to stop in the town centre. By removing thousands of vehicles a day from travelling through the town centre, there will be significant opportunities for its redevelopment and revitalisation. A town centre that is pleasant and easy to walk around will be a desirable destination for locals and visitors alike.
For some people, like tradespeople, public transport will not be a viable option, but for others, rapid transit will be a faster and more efficient way to get where they are going. This will help limit the number of vehicles using roads.
Future generations of Aucklanders deserve options for safer and more sustainable modes of transport to move around their neighbourhoods and communities. A rapid transit corridor that will get people to where they want to go quickly and efficiently will make public transport far more attractive to many more people - just like the Northern Busway has for people on the east coast and North Shore of Auckland.
Our planning in the North West, including the provision of a rapid transit corridor, considers the needs of all road users, not just motorists. More people walking, cycling and using public transport means less traffic for those people who still need to drive.
Following landowner and community feedback and further technical assessment, we made refinements to the route of the Alternative State Highway alignment to reduce impacts on the Kumeū River.
Landowner and community feedback was also received about the central section of the proposed Alternative State Highway between the North Auckland Rail Line in the east and Tawa Road in the west. In response to this feedback and by working closely with Manawhenua and Auckland Council, we developed and evaluated three new options including an option submitted by landowners.
This work resulted in a change to the central section which has been moved further to the south. This is a preferred option because it:
- Is on the edge of the Mixed Rural Zone close to existing roads and doesn’t ‘split’ the area.
- Would result in a reduced impact on flood plains and wetlands to the north.
- Preserves the socio-economic benefits of a local viticulture business and employer.
- Avoids access issues for residents on a no-exit road.
Moving east to west, the preferred route for the Alternative State Highway will start at the new Brigham Creek Interchange and travel towards the North Auckland Rail line. It will run through the southern end of Boord Crescent and then south of Pomona Road to a new interchange at Tawa Road. The western will head north, passing through the southern part of land identified for future urban growth and join the existing SH16 west of Foster Road.
The wider Kumeū-Huapai area is identified in the Auckland Plan 2050 as a greenfield area for investigation and the Auckland Unitary Plan (2016) enables significant growth over the next 30 years. Kumeū-Huapai is anticipated to grow from around 3,432 residents (2018 Census) to around 25,000.
Population in Kumeū-Huapai, 2006-2018 Census
There is capacity for around 2,000-2,500 new dwellings to be built in the short-term over next 5-10 years. *
The Future Urban Land Supply Strategy 2017 earmarks 800ha of the Future Urban Zone in Kumeū-Huapai to be development ready (operative zoning and bulk infrastructure in place) between 2028-2032.
Kumeū-Huapai is growing and will continue to develop and with growth comes opportunities and challenges. Developers, Auckland Council and individual land owners are some of the people involved in developing Kumeū-Huapai and everyone will need to work together to meet the outcomes sought in the Auckland Plan.
The Kumeū-Huapai Centre Plan was developed in collaboration with the community. It outlines a 30-year vision for the town centre and draws together different community ideas. The plan states that the community wants the town centre ‘to look better, to be easier to get around and to have improved public spaces and natural environments.’ It is expected that ongoing and future development will contribute to this vision.
More information about our recent engagement can be found on our website.
* KUMEŪ-HUAPAI CENTRE PLAN. 2017 Auckland Council Plans and Places; Planning North, West and Islands, pp 7.