Auckland Council would need to buy 220 houses, apartments and businesses to put in a 3.5km inner-city rail link which joins Britomart with Mt Eden, it has just been revealed.
The details of the proposed City Rail Link (CRL), which has not yet been given the go-ahead, were released by Auckland Transport on Tuesday afternoon.
The route, up to 44 metres below the ground, would run from Britomart Station along Customs Street, up Albert and Pitt streets, across the Central Motorway Junction to Symonds St before rising to meet the western train line at Eden Terrace.
Auckland Mayor Len Brown says mapping out the route is a big step toward making the CRL a reality.
"The CRL won't just provide a convenient train line below the city centre," he said in a statement.
"It will unleash the potential of the entire suburban rail network, increasing frequency, reliability, and speed of trains across all of Auckland."
The project will cost $2.86 billion and take five years to construct if given the go-ahead.
A statement from Auckland Transport says the CRL will require the purchase of 220 properties, mainly businesses, along the route. Underground portions of land on 75 additional properties would also need to be bought.
The properties will not be purchased until protection of the route has been confirmed by Auckland Transport which is likely to be done in 2014.
Auckland Transport staff are contacting those affected home and business owners.
Funding options for the CRL are being investigated by Auckland Council.
It estimates the CRL would cut the journey from New Lynn to the Aotea Station by half the time and from Manukau to Karangahape Road, the journey would be a third faster.