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Station upgrade all go

DUBBY HENRY
Last updated 05:00 14/11/2012
Papakura Train Station

RENOVATED: Taking a site tour of the Papakura train station upgrade are Papakura Local Board members, from left: Michael Turner, Graham Purdy, Brent Catchpole, John Robinson, Caroline Conroy and chairwoman Hine Joyce-Tahere.

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It's been gutted and refurbished and now the historic Papakura train station is ready to open its doors.

The building, which opens on Monday, now houses a cafe, small museum, ticket depot and toilets.

It's been boarded up for years so before the opening the building will be blessed with a small karakia ceremony this week.

Papakura Local Board members toured the construction site last week and were impressed with the upgrade.

Local board transport portfolio holder Brent Catchpole says he's particularly enamoured of the ticket office and museum where the historic manual operation system has been preserved as a wall display.

A photo display that will capture the station's history "gives people something to go and have a look at when they arrive here from out of town", he says.

He hopes the information stands will encourage people to visit the town centre and "spend a bit of money while they're here" instead of just passing through.

The renovations are part of a major upgrade of the Papakura train station, a joint project between KiwiRail and Auckland Transport which is being undertaken by Hawkins Construction.

The platforms are being widened to cater for an eventual increase in services and the tracks have been reconfigured as part of the network electrification which ends at Papakura.

Other plans include the reconfiguration of Railway St West so buses can approach the station as part of a transport interchange.

Platform 3 will reopen on Monday and Platform 2 will close, with all services running from Platform 1 and 3.

The Platform 2 phase of construction is expected to finish around Christmas.

Information displays and station announcements will keep passengers informed.

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- Papakura Courier

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