KiwiRail last month opened a new station building in central Auckland, for travelers to check in and relax before boarding their Northern Explorer scenic or Te Huia train journey.
66 The Strand, a former railway signals building which dates from around 1930, is located only a few hundred meters down The Strand platform, near the bottom of the Parnell Rise. The building has maintained its character by retaining its brick façade and ornate doors. The inside has been completely restored and renovated, adding modern features, such as a new café, waiting lounge and workspace area.
The building was officially opened this morning with a karakia from representatives of KiwiRail’s Maori network Te Kupenga Mahi.
“The signals building once played an important role managing train movements in this part of Auckland, before signals were centralised and controlled electronically,” KiwiRail Chief Customer and Growth Officer Adele Wilson said. “Instead of demolishing the building, I’m proud of what the team have done repurposing it for modern times. It’s now a comfortable, convenient, multi-purpose space that people can enjoy.”
Wilson says Great Journeys NZ Northern Explorer has seen attractive passenger numbers since the service restarted just over a year ago. In May 2024 KiwiRail is planning to start the high-quality Scenic Plus offering on the Northern Explorer.
“The new station building will help deliver an even better customer experience for Northern Explorer and Te Huia passengers, while keeping a strong link to New Zealand’s proud rail history,” Wilson said.