City Rail Link

What is CRL?

What is CRL?


The City Rail Link (CRL) in 60 seconds

  • The City Rail Link is the largest infrastructure project ever to be undertaken in New Zealand
  • The CRL is a 3.45km twin-tunnel underground rail link up to 42 metres below the city centre transforming the downtown Britomart Transport Centre into a two-way through-station that better connects the Auckland rail network
  • It includes a redeveloped Mount Eden Station, where the CRL connects with the North Auckland (Western Line) and two new underground stations - one mid-town at Wellesley and Victoria Streets provisionally named Aotea and one at Mercury Lane, off Karangahape Road - provisionally named Karangahape.
  • It will extend the existing rail line underground through Britomart, to Albert, Vincent and Pitt Streets, and then cross beneath Karangahape Road and the Central Motorway Junction to Symonds Street before rising to join the western line at Eden Terrace where the Mount Eden Station is. Mount Eden Station will be significantly re-developed
  • Britomart will no longer be a "dead end" station but a through station
  • The depth of the two new underground stations - Aotea Station 11m depth and Karangahape Road 33m
  • The CRL is jointly funded by the Government and Auckland Council
  • City Rail Link Ltd which came into being on 1 July 2017, has full governance, operational and financial responsibility for the CRL, with clear delivery targets and performance expectations. The project 's total cost will be within a funding envelope of $3.4b
  • Completion date- the CRL is due for completion in early 2024.

How will I notice it as a rail user?

Making Britomart a through station will allow better than a train every 10 minutes at peak (on average) for most Auckland stations. It will allow 30,000 people an hour on Auckland trains at peak times.

It will give you quicker travel and better access to more parts of the city centre with the new stations near mid-town and at Karangahape Road. It will be faster because trains no longer have to go all the way to Britomart and stop dead there.


For example,  Kingsland train travellers will have a 70% saving in travel times to the city (10 minutes compared to the present 34). Ellerslie to Karangahape Rd will be 18 minutes (instead of the present 35 to Britomart – a 49% times savings).


What if I am a bus user?

Bus capacity is starting to be a concern to the extent light rail is also being considered for the future. Without the CRL, major bus routes will be at or over capacity in 2021.

The CRL provides more public transport options enabling more people to consider train travel and so helping enable a much more efficient and effective bus network.

But what if I am a motorist?

The CRL has transport benefits for large parts of Auckland, including road users, as making public transport a better travel choice will ease pressure on roads for those who need to use them. A 6-carriage electric train takes about 625 cars off the road.

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