The Eastern Busway will link Panmure and Pakuranga. Roads will be widened to create a dedicated bus route and there will also be intersection improvements, new paths for walking and cycling, improved public spaces and a second bridge across Tamaki River.
Auckland Transport (AT) chief executive Shane Ellison said: “This is AT’s largest infrastructure contract and follows a rigorous process involving a number of extremely well-qualified companies. It has been an important part of our approach to apply socially responsible guidelines so we can ensure positive community results that cover areas beyond transport, including employment, waste management and youth training.”
The contract with Fulton Hogan has specific clauses around environmental standards, minimum wage payments and recruitment practices targeting youth, Maori and Pacific people.
Fulton Hogan, CEO NZ Graeme Johnson said: “We’re proud to have been awarded the contract. We are a New Zealand owned business, employing more than a thousand staff in the Auckland region. This is a major route upgrade for Auckland and our team bring the experience required to deliver this project successfully in a challenging and busy network environment, with a key focus on the health and safety of both the public and our team.”
Auckland mayor Phil Goff said: “For too long we have under-invested in public transport for east Auckland. As the area has grown, the roads have become more congested without suitable alternative transport options. The $1.4 billion being invested in the Eastern Busway from Panmure to Botany helps rectify this. It will be transformational for the area.”
Using the busway and the new Panmure rail station, commuters will be able to travel from Botany to Britomart in less than 40 minutes, cutting travel time by more than a third.
Construction will begin in April and will take approximately two years.