Last month saw the final signal of the manual signalling machine at Pukekohe. Now concerns have been raised over what will happen to the Pukekohe Railway Station building.
The building was built as Pukekohe’s second railway station in 1913, has an important history in New Zealand Railways, and is noted to have considerable social value within the locality.
While the external features of the station building appear to be in fair overall condition, according to a report from July 2017, areas of the interior are in poor condition, and parts will need further attention.
The station is leased from KiwiRail to Auckland Transport and KiwiRail say that with expected expansion plans for the area, it is likely the existing station will need to be moved from the current site, or demolished.
“KiwiRail is aware of local interest in the building, and it is currently in discussions with interested parties. However, the efficient use of Pukekohe as a station will be the primary determinant of the future of the building,” a KiwiRail spokesperson said.
However, organisations like the Franklin Heritage Forum say there has been no consultation with them.
“We should be an interested party and we don’t appear to be. We don’t want it shifted, it would be far better in its original place as a shelter,” said Christine Madsen of the Forum.
What is also a worry for the group is that the 104 year old building is not listed as a Heritage building and is therefore, not protected.
Auckland Council has listed 60 heritage sites in the Franklin area as part of the Auckland Unitary Plan. Recently, Waiuku Town Centre was listed and protected in the plan.
Dependent on the use of the building, Christine says the building should still be kept, even if to use for a different purpose. She said stations like Papakura have the original building, but include a cafe and historical information on the site.
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