High speed rail to Tauranga for $20 million – yeah right

The Herald reports:

leader Jacinda Ardern’s $20 million promise to link passenger services between Tauranga and Auckland has already hit a snag, with Port of Tauranga’s boss questioning its likelihood.

Ardern pledged the $20m to establish the first stage of the passenger service proposal – estimated to cost $10m.

If demand is there, Labour would look to invest in stages two and three of the plan, delivering services travelling up to 160km/h throughout the wider region.

The additional $10m would be invested over five years for operating costs.

Rail projects around the world are known to always cost way way more than their promoters claim. We’ve seen this in Australia and the UK. And high speed rail is especially expensive.  The Independent reported:

Britain’s new high-speed rail line will be the most expensive railway in the world with costs per mile expected to reach £403m, according to Government calculations. 

Note that is the cost per mile, not the cost for the whole line. And Labour claims it can do high speed from Auckland to Tauranga for $20 million!

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