The new Northwest bus station is at the heart of the new connected public transport network for Northwest Auckland, connecting bus users to express services to the city centre.
On this page:
Project status: Design / Consultation
Project zone: Northwest
The Northwest bus station in Westgate is a critical component in delivering Northwest Auckland's bus network. The project, being delivered by Auckland Transport, is a shovel ready project supported by the New Zealand Government and Crown Infrastructure Partners.
- Improves passenger transfer between Westgate and the city centre.
- Supports the increased volume and movement of buses to and from the Northwest and the wider network.
- Provides a key regional bus destination and allows people to transfer to regional bus services.
Bus routes at the Northwest station
When the station opens, the following bus routes serve the Northwest bus station:
Hobsonville, via Whenuapai
Local loop service
Helensville, via Huapai
City centre via Westgate Drive
City centre via Triangle Road
Massey (peak service)
Western Express service into city centre
The project was funded by Auckland Transport and the New Zealand Government through the Crown Infrastructure Partners and Waka Kotahi at the expected construction cost of $50 million.
2021-2022 – Initial design process
2022 – Public engagement and consultation
2022-2023 – Detailed design
2024 – Start of construction
2025/26 – Completion and opening of the station
Location of the bus station
The new bus station will include:
- an architectural look and feel that incorporates local and cultural history
- an enhanced level of service, security and shelter for passengers
- a swale drain as a more natural way of directing rain fall into the soil
- a design that maximises natural light and the sense of space
- intuitive orientation and wayfinding
- bus bay roofs provided for passenger’s shelter and will accommodate double-decker buses
- bus bay locations on both sides of the station to make it easy for bus passengers to transfer between services
- protection from the weather.
The design of the station has integrated enhanced measures to provide the safety and security for passengers while using the station, from early in the morning to late at night. These include:
- windows to enable visibility in and around the bus station at all times
- CCTV operating around the station at all times
- lighting design that uses multiple lights to provide consistent lighting levels
- help points with 24/7 emergency telephone contact to a central control point.
The new bus station is designed to provide customers a comfortable environment while using the bus station. It will have:
- an easy location close to shopping centres, places of work and other public amenities
- a comfortable seating area to wait for a bus
- a digital message boards with real-time passenger information bus service information
- HOP card machines and information about other bus services
- easy access for pedestrians and people on bikes
- bike racks and parking
- a short term parking zone to drop off and pick up passengers
- Protection from the weather
- a coffee kiosk
- public toilets.
Images of the proposed design
View of the bus station looking south toward Fred Taylor Drive.
Customer seating inside the station. The station is designed to provide the maximum amount of natural light.
The front of the bus station on Gunton Drive.
A view inside that station of HOP card machines, customer service desk and a coffee kiosk in the background.
Developing Gunton Drive
Gunton Drive, between Fred Taylor Drive and Kedgley Road, will be redesigned and prioritised to accommodate the new bus station.
Footpaths will be widened to a minimum of 4 metres on the western side of the street to accommodate pedestrians and cyclists. There will be further widening at various positions to provide space for street furniture and public waiting areas.
We consulted on the design of the bus station in June 2022. In total, 210 submissions were received. Respondents were asked to respond to questions about the design and safety features of the station, and the customer facilities. They were also asked to say in open ended questions what they liked and what they would change about the design and customer facilities.
The feedback showed that people were supportive of the bus station. The following is a summary of the key questions were sought feedback on:
- 75% of respondents said the visual attractiveness of the station was either good or very good
- 68% of respondents said the level of safety and security was good or very good
- 74% of respondents said the location of the bus station was good or very good.
To ensure the community was aware of the consultation, and to provide the opportunity to give feedback, we:
- sent brochures to 15000 properties around the Westgate area
- posted to AT’s social media channels
- ran a geo-targeted social media advertising campaign
- issued a media release.
- created a project page on the AT website with a link to an online feedback form
- engaged with stakeholders via email, phone, and meetings
- held four public drop-in sessions at Te Manawa (Westgate) on 16, 18, 23 and 25 June 2022.
To determine the preferred location for the Northwest bus station, a comprehensive process was followed. AT identified a number of options for the station location and using a multi criteria analysis (MCA). Each option was assessed to help make a final decision.
The MCA evaluated each option with a range of factors, including:
- Engineering feasibility
- Design flexibility
- Consenting and property requirements
- Safety risks including traffic, pedestrian and cycle safety
- Customer experience
- Walking and cycling accessibility
- Faster journey times for public transport
- More reliable journey time for public transport
- Reduce CO2 emissions
Option 1: minor upgrade
This option would involve minor improvements to the existing Westgate bus facility on Fernhill Drive and Westgate Drive. Stops in each direction on Fernhill Drive and stops on the western side of Westgate Drive would be retained as current and will require additional upgrade to facilitate terminus service of the 125 and 126F.
Option 1 consists of improving pedestrian facilities surrounding the bus stops by raising pedestrian crossings and widening the concrete footpaths to improve customer experience. In conjunction, there would be upgrades to existing bus shelters and facilities. Two layover bays would remain in their current location on Westgate Drive.
Option 2: Off-line Northwest Station
An off-line bus station located between Gunton Drive and the proposed busway alignment parallel to SH16. This option provides for a potential staged approach towards the delivery of a future Northwest busway interchange.
The station would have five bus stops in each direction and five off-line layover bays located north of the Kedgley Drive intersection to serve both local and motorway bus services. Internal circulation north of the Kedgley Drive entrance and south of the Tawhia Drive entrance enables vehicles to access bus stops and layovers from both entry points to minimise dead kilometres. New signal phases would be required and were previously developed as part of the Westgate Station Optioneering process in 2017.
Local and motorway services are planned to circulate through the interchange as follows:
- Inbound local through routes would approach from Kedgley Drive and exit the station to continue route via Tawhia Drive. Outbound services would approach from Tawhia Drive and continue route via Kedgley Drive
- Inbound and outbound local terminating routes would approach and depart the station via Tawhia Drive utilising turning and layover facilities at the station
- Citybound motorway services would depart along Tawhia Drive before accessing SH16 via Fred Taylor Drive. Terminating motorway services will approach from SH16 along Gunton Drive.
Option 3: Off-line and On-street Northwest Station
This proposed option provides an integrated off-line and on-street bus interchange facility. This option enables a potential staged approach towards the delivery of a future Northwest busway interchange.
Similar to Option 2, this option has a reduced footprint to minimise the impact on the existing stormwater pond. To enable the reduced footprint – on-street stops would be used for southbound services. These stops could be utilised as public drop-off bays in future, should this station be expanded to a full off-line station.
Off-line facilities include five bus stops and five layover bays. There are five on-street bus stops located on Gunton Drive. Buses can access the station from both the Kedgley Drive and Tawhia Drive intersections. Turnaround facilities at both the north and south end of the off-line station enable vehicle access to bus stops and layovers from both entry points to minimise dead kilometres.
There is a proposed pick up and drop off area opposite the facility on the western side of Gunton Drive. This option makes use of both private and public land however, an alternative of the option could look to shift the station further north should there be property challenges.
Option 5: NZ Retail Property Group Station
An integrated public transport hub based on a proposed concept design provided by NZRPG. The proposed site for this development is a privately-owned lot between Tawhia Drive, Gunton Drive, Kedgley Drive and Maki Street. It is currently utilised as an at-grade parking facility. The proposed Westgate station would occupy the ground level space with car parking above and commercial and retail development surrounding.
Buses would enter and exit the covered station on Kedgley Drive. Pedestrians would be able to access the station from Tawhia Drive and a main pedestrian only access approaching the station from the opposite direction. The station would be built to accommodate double-decker vehicles and any changes or advancements in bus technology.
This option takes into consideration the long-term proposal for a segregated rapid transit system along SH16 – with an indicative LRT alignment on Gunton Drive.
Options Assessment Workshop
A range of Pre-Options Assessment Workshop meetings were held in April 2020 with:
- AT Metro
- Waka Kotahi
- AT Planning and Property teams
It was agreed at the Options Assessment Workshop that the following options should be eliminated for the following reasons:
- While Option 1 is an upgrade of the existing facility, this option does not achieve the investment objectives and is not aligned with the recommended public transport network. Bus stops along Fernhill Drive have already been shortened due to safety reasons around the entrance to the childcare centre and cannot be lengthened further.
- Option 2 delivers a high-quality offline station that can be feasibly delivered within the short-term timeframes. Like Option 3, this option requires the acquisition of a large portion of privately-owned land and provides similar benefits. The option has higher stormwater risks and costs due to increased impervious area required for the layover bays. The layout of Option 3 is preferred as a short-term solution.
- Option 4 is a full on-street option making use of two bus stops in each direction on Gunton Drive and three bus stops in each direction on Tawhia Drive and can be delivered within the short-term requirement of the project scope. An optimised layout can be delivered within the road corridor – but will lead to additional conflict with the various entrances of large commercial properties along Tawhia Drive and Gunton Drive. The option will also require the removal of on-street parking along Gunton Drive and Tawhia Drive, which will further limit the opportunity to locate drop-off facilities near the stops.
- Option 5 provides a high-quality bus station; however, this option cannot be delivered within the required timeframes. The property will likely be leased to AT and will have significant operational costs due to the on-going property lease. An interim option on this site will also have to be relocated during construction of the ultimate station and oversite development.
- Auckland Council advised that they support the offline station with local and express stops all within the same site.
Based on the outcomes of the MCA assessment and the options analysis workshop, Option 3 was identified as the recommended short-term option. The facility provides for a high-quality offline station in the preferred location – as its future-proofed for potential long-term RTN alignment. An upgrade of the existing Fernhill Drive facilities will also be required to improve their operations and amenity in addition to the preferred Option 3.
Whilst this option would require acquisition of the Kedgley Investment and Westgate Town Centre Limited property and an notification of requirement before it can be constructed, the site and location enables flexibility in the construction of the station and can easily be staged by a combined approach of Option 4 and Option 2 respectively, until all requirements are met.
Stage 1 comprises of making use of the existing but upgraded facilities on the corner of Fernhill Drive and Westgate Drive whilst providing on-street options similar to Option 4 that would not require property acquisition. This approach could typically comprise out of a combination between Option 4 and Option 2 respectively. Stage 2 comprises of further developing Option 3 where this option will create an interface with the medium-term busway.