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Rail Shuttle Reduces Lyttelton Tunnel Truck Volumes

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Rail Shuttle Reduces Lyttelton Tunnel Truck Volumes

3 JULY 2009 - An initiative between KiwiRail and the Lyttelton Port of Christchurch, to move containers by rail between the port and its CityDepot site in Woolston is already reducing heavy truck movements through the Lyttelton road tunnel.

The short haul container rail shuttle service has the potential to replace up to 45,000 truck journeys a year along the busy six kilometre journey through the road tunnel to the port.

KiwiRail Commercial manager, Aaron Temperton, said the new service has been trialled over the past few weeks and has already led to a reduction in the number of trucks along the route.

"While it is not a long journey it can deliver great operational and environmental benefits and cost savings because of the volumes that can be carried by rail, "Aaron Temperton said.

Each service can take up to 32 20-foot containers, the equivalent load of between16 - 32 trucks.

Lyttelton Port of Christchurch chief executive Peter Davie said the new shuttle service was a very cost-effective solution for the port.

"Rail transport is much more cost effective than road for the short distance between the port and the CityDepot site," Peter Davie said.

The service also allows the Port to control when the containers and freight are delivered to the Port terminal, further improving logistics.

The scheme has the support of Christchurch mayor Bob Parker, who welcomed the new service for its economic, environmental and community benefits.

"Lyttelton Port of Christchurch is a key asset for the region and I am happy to support the CityDepot initiative," Bob Parker said.

"Reducing potential congestion through the road tunnel and at the port will be welcomed by local residents and road users."

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