The new Waitangi Wharf on Rēkohu/Chatham Islands/Wharekauri was officially opened by Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin today.
According to Minister Martin,“This $52 million wharf upgrade is very significant for the Chatham Islands community, which relies on shipping for essential resources, like diesel for the electricity grid and fuel for air services.”
“The increased operating capacity of the wharf will also have flow on effects for the local economy, with exports accounting for a significant proportion of the Chatham Islands income. The upgraded wharf will make shipping more reliable, improve the health and safety of those that use Waitangi Wharf and improve animal welfare for exported livestock,” added the minister.
The wharf upgrade project included:
- 163 meter breakwater made of 4000 Xblocs (an interlocking concrete block designed to protect the wharf from the impact of incoming waves);
- 10,700 square meters of port area;
- 90 meter long cargo wharf;
- 35 meter fishermen’s wharf; and
- water tanks for 100 cattle.
The minister also said that the project was logistically difficult given the Chatham Islands’ geographical isolation and challenging weather conditions, but it was delivered efficiently and cost effectively by a cross-government and industry partnership, led by the Memorial Park Alliance. The Alliance includes the Department of Internal Affairs, the New Zealand Transport Agency, HEB Construction, Downer, Tonkin & Taylor, and AECOM.