CRL working with mana whenua to create a better inner-city rail network
The government has announced a $30 billion plan to sort out Auckland’s transport problems.
One of those projects has already started; a massive inner-city rail is being laid some 40 metres under the CBD.
It's the largest infrastructure project ever to be undertaken in New Zealand.
The CRL (City Rail Link) is a 3.45 km twin-tunnel underground rail link up to 42 metres below the city centre that will transform the downtown Britomart Transport Centre into a two-way through-station that better connects the Auckland rail network enabling rail lines through to Mt Eden.
The current trench on Albert St is 18 metres deep, 13 metres wide and 350 metres long.
But the big question is what happens when artefacts or human remains are discovered?
According to Carol Greensmith of Te Mana Whenua Forum, there’s an archaeologist’s working every step of the way.
“We have an archaeologist on site if we discovered artefacts then we inform our Mana Whenua Forum. That’s eight iwi. We inform them and they have access to do whatever they wish should we find kōiwi work then work ceases immediately.”
Ngāti Whātua are the kaitiaki of Auckland's City centre.
Most landscapes being excavated are old pā sites but despite that, Ngarimu Blair of Ngāti Whātua says they are opening minded about how the project will assist in taking care of the environment.
“He kaupapa tēnei hei tiaki te Waitematā me te taiao nō te mea ka haere te nuinga i runga i ngā tereina, ngā pahi me ngā pahikara mō te taiao ki te whakaiti te paruparu e rere ana ki te moana.”
The CRL is due for completion in early 2024 and early preparation work for the Mt Eden station commenced earlier this week.