Ports of Auckland’s disappearing container crane
Ports of Auckland’s oldest container crane is being dismantled.
‘D’ crane has been on the port since 1991, but its days moving containers are over. It is now being taken down piece by piece, a process that is expected to take four weeks. The job started in early November.
Since 2011, Ports of Auckland has made huge efficiency gains at its Fergusson Container Terminal. As a result the port has been able to close Bledisloe Container Terminal and its three cranes are no longer needed. Bledisloe Terminal now handles roll-on, roll-off (‘Ro-Ro’) vessels which carry new and used cars, heavy vehicles (trucks, buses, trains, tractors, construction equipment etc.) and large project cargo that can’t fit on container ships.
‘D’ crane is no longer operational and will be scrapped. ‘E’ & ‘F’ cranes, which date from 1996, are still operational and it is hoped a buyer can be found for them.
“It will be sad to see the old cranes go. They are an iconic feature of the working waterfront, often photographed by visitors and locals alike. But times have changed. We no longer handle containers at that end of the port and we need the room for other types of cargo. Removing these cranes helps us make better use of our existing land,” said Tony Gibson, Ports of Auckland CEO.
‘D’ crane was commissioned in 1991 and first operated on Fergusson Container Terminal. It was moved from Fergusson (on the back of two trucks) and relocated to Bledisloe Terminal in 2007.
‘D’ crane was designed and manufactured by Noell GmbH of Germany. The main structure was built in Abu Dhabi, with walkways and ladders built by IST Engineering of Penrose. The boom and apex of ‘E’ & ’F’ cranes were built in Auckland by Grayson Engineering. All cranes were erected and commissioned by Ports of Auckland’s engineering department.
‘D’, ‘E’ & ‘F’ cranes are 67.85 metres high and weigh 787 tonnes.