Pic­ton car rentals forced to move

Marlborough Express - - NEWS - ANAN ZAKI

Car rental com­pa­nies have been forced out of their of­fices next to a Pic­ton ferry ter­mi­nal be­cause of on­go­ing ground move­ment.

Build­ings and wharves around the har­bour, owned by Port Marl­bor­ough, were deemed to have ‘‘per­formed well’’ in last Novem­ber’s earth­quake but in­ves­ti­ga­tions last week showed con­tin­ued ground move­ment.

The rental of­fices will be moved to the In­ter­is­lander ter­mi­nal next to the rental of­fice build­ing.

Port Marl­bor­ough busi­ness de­liv­ery man­ager Rhys Wel­bourn said de­spite the ter­mi­nal be­ing next to the car rental of­fices there was no is­sue with the land around the ter­mi­nal.

He said the cause of the move­ment was the foun­da­tion of the rental build­ing not be­ing strong enough to stop ground move­ment.

‘‘The foun­da­tion of the ter­mi­nal is pile driven and the rental build­ing is not,’’ Wel­bourn said.

Wel­bourn said the build­ings and wharves were as­sessed by en­gi­neers im­me­di­ately af­ter the Novem­ber 14, 2016 earth­quake and per­formed well de­spite some su­per­fi­cial dam­age.

Wel­bourn said it was a low-risk ap­proach.

‘‘We’ve been mon­i­tor­ing since the earth­quake and as time went on there has been func­tional is­sues due to slip­ping,’’ Wel­bourn said.

Func­tional is­sues were de­scribed as is­sues such as doors stick­ing.

‘‘It’s now got to the point where en­gi­neers have done a re­view and we de­cided to move out and we are look­ing to move them to the ferry ter­mi­nal build­ing,’’ Wel­bourn said.

An ini­tial as­sess­ment fol­low­ing the Novem­ber 2016 earth­quake sug­gested the ground move­ment would stop.

Port Marl­bor­ough hoped to avoid dis­rup­tion in the process.

‘‘We are work­ing with the car rental com­pa­nies and In­ter­Is­lander to min­imise any po­ten­tial im­pacts to their op­er­a­tions.

‘‘It’s early days, we’re try­ing to do it the most ef­fi­cient way,’’ Wel­bourn said.

The plan was to move the rental com­pa­nies next to the bag­gage area in the ferry ter­mi­nal.

The port also was plan­ning for a per­ma­nent fix and hoped to avoid dis­rup­tion in the up­com­ing hol­i­day pe­riod.

‘‘We’re work­ing on longer term so­lu­tions and will move as quickly as we can be­ing mind­ful that Christ­mas is fast ap­proach­ing,’’ Wel­bourn said.

In last Novem­ber’s earth­quake, some dam­age to the ferry pas­sen­ger ter­mi­nal dis­rupted In­ter­is­lander foot traf­fic for two weeks.

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