Last minute rush for har­bour open­ing


A week ago re­sources to move the tonnes of earth and rock from the tem­po­rary bund placed around the pub­lic boat ramp were scarce.

Moun­tains of ex­ca­vated marine bed had been formed in a pro­tec­tive bund so con­trac­tors could work in a dry area while a 10m ex­ten­sion to the ramp was com­pleted.

With the open­ing of the har­bour just days away, con­trac­tors pulled out all the stops to get it ready for the of­fi­cial open­ing on Tues­day.

By Wed­nes­day earth­mov­ing trucks were lined up as ex­ca­vat­ing equip­ment dug away at the bund, made up of a mix of seabed and lime­stone rock, to be carted away.

The day be­fore that a call had gone out for help from the North Can­ter­bury Trans­port In­fra­struc­ture Re­cov­ery (NCTIR) net­work.

By Wed­nes­day a southerly storm with winds gust­ing at more than 100kmh blasted up the coast and earth­mov­ing work had stopped tem­po­rar­ily on the coastal high­way.

‘‘A few things had stopped up the coast.’’ said project man­ager Kaiko¯ura Ma­rina Re­build Stu Haynes. Ini­tially the word came back. ‘‘We haven’t got any­thing, we’re busy but it only takes one break­down, or weather like this when you can’t track around the coast for a truck to show up, while things have stopped up the coast,’’ said Haynes.

Haynes said that ev­ery time the seabed was ex­ca­vated there had to be a bund placed around the area.

‘‘There were a lot of ex­ten­sions on the boat ramp.

‘‘Even three weeks ago there were changes to the pro­gramme.

‘‘The bund had been put up so sea­wa­ter could be pumped out while the boat ramp was ex­tended.

‘‘We had pumps on top of the bund pump­ing wa­ter back out to the ocean so we could work in­side it.’’

Among the trucks from Christchurch and the West Coast there were a few fa­mil­iar lo­cal faces.

Haynes said NCTIR had used a heap of lo­cal in­dus­try sup­port to beef up the strength of the team.

‘‘We used a lot of lo­cal guys, we had the su­per­vi­sion and tech­ni­cal side cov­ered with the NCTIR de­liv­ery model, and then used a heap of lo­cal guys to chip in.’’ he said.


Trucks lined up last Wed­nes­day to take away ex­ca­vated ma­te­rial af­ter last-minute work at South Bay Ma­rina.

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