Future Rail

Building a better rail network for the Wellington region

With more than 14 million passenger journeys a year on the Wellington Rail Network, while the rail network is well maintained some parts of it are wearing out and need to be replaced. KiwiRail and Metlink are working together to upgrade the rail network to makes services more reliable and enable more people to travel on trains in the future, with funding provided by the New Zealand Government. 

Future Rail, also known as the Wellington Metro Upgrade (external link), is a collection of projects which will deliver a service with fewer speed restrictions and outages, longer trains and more services for our Metlink commuters. Improving the network is an ongoing project with currently funded works will be delivered until 2026. 

Future Rail projects can be divided into two main areas:

1. Renewing existing infrastructure so services run as smoothly as possible:

  • Replacing and modernising the overhead power system and signals power supply
  • Renewing the track, across the network including inside the four major tunnels

2. Adding capacity so more people can travel on trains in the future while still allowing for freight services:

  • Double tracking between Trentham and Upper Hutt
  • Improvements to Wellington Railway Station approaches and changes at Plimmerton

Keep an eye out for the project symbol to see the upgrade work underway in your area.

For more detail on the Future Rail project, visit the KiwiRail website(external link)

Works are spread across the wider Wellington region

More information on KiwiRail website(external link)

What does this mean for me?

With most of the rail lines being used almost 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, we’re working with KiwiRail to balance keeping the trains running while planning access to the tracks for upgrade work at quieter times. Some work can only be done when there are no trains on the track, so we’ll provide buses to replace trains to ensure you can still get to where you’re needing to go.

Know before you go by signing up to My Metlink(external link) or see the posters at your local station for upcoming track work, project updates and buses replacing trains page(external link).

You deserve a reliable network and we’re working hard to make that happen as we continue to refine and improve the network based on your feedback and our research.

Last published: Tuesday, February 1, 2022 at 10:09 AM