28 Oct 2012

Mayor disappointed TranzAlpine train service under review

5:28 pm on 28 October 2012

Grey District Mayor Tony Kokshoorn says he's disappointed KiwiRail is reviewing the viability of the TranzAlpine scenic train service.

KiwiRail is also reviewing the Coastal Pacific scenic service between Christchurch and Picton, after a 24% fall in the company's passenger business for the year to June.

KiwiRail says to be profitable, the daily TranzAlpine service between Christchurch and Greymouth needs 80% occupancy, but the train is usually less than half full.

It says the popularity of both services is affected by the lack of hotel accommodation in Christchurch.

But Mr Kokshoorn says the TranzAlpine has been listed in the Lonely Planet travel guide as one of the best train journeys in the world and has huge prospects once Christchurch and the world economy have recovered.