City Rail Link




The CRL is the largest single transport infrastructure project in New Zealand's history.

It has been a vision for Auckland since the 1920’s. You can read about the history here.

BREAKTHROUGH: In December 2018, CRL celebrated a major milestone with the breakthrough from the Albert Street tunnels to CRL tunnels across the Commercial Bay site, Downtown Auckland

IT'S ALL GO! AT Chair Lester Levy, Auckland Mayor Len Brown, Prime Minister John Key and Transport Minister Simon Bridges at the historic groundbreaking ceremony for the CRL in Downtown Auckland June 2016

Here we list the big milestones in 2019.

Follow the links at the bottom of the page for milestones in previous years of the Project.

Re-opening of the Wyndham Street West intersection

14 June 2019

Road users will from this Monday (17 June) have much easier journeys through a busy central city intersection where access has been restricted  for the past three years because of the City Rail Link (CRL) project.

The re-opening of the Wyndham Street West intersection with Albert Street in an east-west direction will allow people to go straight across Albert Street in either direction again – east along Wyndham Street down to Queen Street or west past St Patrick’s Cathedral  towards Hobson Street.   

 “We’re delighted to be able to reopen the intersection for through traffic,” says City Rail Link Ltd’s Chief Executive, Dr Sean Sweeney. “I want to thank people for their support and patience during our necessary work in the area,  I acknowledge it’s been a long wait, but I hope it will now be easier for people to access this section of Albert Street.”  

Some restrictions will continue for both road users and pedestrians around the intersection. Vehicles will not be able to make right turns into Albert Street from either direction on Wyndham Street,  and the footpath on the north or cathedral side of Wyndham Street West remains a construction zone.  Reinstatement of the footpath will start soon. 

“There’s still work to be done and we would ask everyone, whether they are walking or using the roads, to continue to take care,” Dr Sweeney says.

Improved access marks the end of an important phase of CRL work in the area.  A trench 18 metres deep that was dug across the Wyndham/Albert Street intersection for the rail  tunnels has now been backfilled, and work on renewing and shifting underground utilities  is finished. 

  Construction of the tunnels under Albert Street is due to finish next month and backfilling the full length of the tunnel trench will be completed in October.  Reinstatement of the first section of Albert Street will start at end of this winter and will be completed in 2020. 

Dr Sweeney says while the end is in sight for CRL works at the harbour end of Albert Street, construction on other sections of the CRL project is now ramping up.

“Further disruption will be unavoidable, but we are committed to minimising impacts and working with our partners to keep traffic, particularly bus services, moving through our work sites,” Dr Sweeney says. 

Third year at Britomart

04 June 2019

The Downer Soletanche Bachy Joint Venture ( DSBJV) is now only a couple of months away from celebrating its third year constructing City Rail Link’s Contract 1 at Britomart.

The JV team has recently completed the bulk excavation of two trenches under the CPO Building and Lower Queen Street (LQS), and is now working on the construction of the new train tunnels.

Lower Queen Street


Bulk excavation of the 14m deep LQS trench was completed this month, enabling DSBJV to complete breakthrough works to expose the new Fletchers tunnels underneath Precinct’s Commercial Bay site.

Two large breakers were used to cut and breakout a number of secant piles. Works are also underway on the exposed Precinct tunnels to ensure they are ready to connect to the new C1 tunnels.

Along the northern secant pile wall of the LQS trench, works are underway to construct the concrete in-fills that will eventually form part of the permanent drainage path across LQS.

Northern Tunnel

Construction of the concrete base slabs for the northern tunnel was being completed this week. Construction of the infill area between the tunnel walls and diaphragm walls is underway, and will be filled with sand/cement flow-able fill over the next few weeks.

Tunnel walls will be started in late April, ready for roof construction in mid to late May.

Southern Tunnel

The southern tunnel is approximately two weeks behind the northern. This is due to the necessary removal of the old pedestrian underpass that previously ran from the train station through to where Commercial Bay is being built. Concrete pours are underway in the southern tunnel, with three out of five base slabs now complete.

Construction of the in-fill section between the tunnel and the diaphragm walls has just commenced.

Britomart Station lower levels

In the lower levels of Britomart train station, the northern curved blockwork walls are in the process of being removed. This will enable the existing train line to connect to the tunnel portal, which is located between the station and the northern tunnel under the CPO.

In May, the stairs on the northern side of the escalators, between the station’s lower and middle levels, will be demolished. This will be followed by works to modify the existing escalators. Access and egress for station passengers will be maintained at all times.

^ back to top

Latest section taking shape

08 January 2019

Construction has taken another significant step with work starting on construction of the first of the two rail tunnel boxes to be built under the heritage-listed Chief Post Office (CPO) building in lower Queen Street.

Seventy cubic metres of reinforced concrete is being poured for the first base slab, or some of the floor, of the northbound tunnel below the old building.

This pour was an important moment for City Rail Link Ltd (CRLL) and its Contract 1 (C1) contractor Downer Soletanche Bachy JV, says CRLL Chief Executive Dr Sean Sweeney.

“We’ve been working for this moment since July 2016 – for the past 30 months or so, this is what we have been gearing up for. That time has been a challenging one for our C1 contract in lower Queen Street and Britomart.”

“Our teams have been working in some pretty demanding conditions, not only immediately adjacent to a live railway station but also excavating below sea level with the Waitemata Harbour only a few metres away. On top of that, some remarkable skill and innovation has been used to protect the CPO building so that we could get underneath it.”

Dr Sweeney says there is still a lot of work to be done in this area before both the northbound and southbound tunnel boxes are completed later this year.

“Once we’ve finished, it will be possible to walk the first section of the City Rail Link from Britomart station to beneath Albert Street as far as Wyndham Street. As for the CPO building, we are on track to reinstate and return it as part of the Britomart station in late 2020.”

^ back to top