Lyttelton Port Company (LPC) said in they latest release that one of the world’s largest dredges – the Fairway – will sail into Lyttelton Harbor in August as the port’s channel deepening project gets underway.
The Fairway will be a permanent fixture in the harbor for 11 weeks as it works to deepen the channel, which will see the overall dredging program become New Zealand’s biggest to date, LPC said.
LPC was granted resource consent in March 2018 to dredge the harbor shipping channel to increase its draught.
The 230 meter-long Fairway will collect silty clay from the seabed of the harbor, as it works to widen the navigation channel by 20 meters and deepen it to allow vessels with a 13.3 meter draught to call at Lyttelton.
The first stage of work will see the Fairway lengthen the channel by 2.5km.
The channel deepening, which will allow bigger ships to access the port, will provide Canterbury’s importers and exporters the best possible and most cost effective international shipping solutions, said LPC.
The initial stage of the dredging program has been awarded to Netherlands-based contractor Royal Boskalis Westminster N.V. Built in 1997, the Fairway is one of Boskalis’ 30 trailing suction hopper dredgers.
The Fairway will make its journey from Mumbai, India, after completing its latest project – and make a stop in Singapore for a thorough clean before heading to Lyttelton Harbor. The Cawthron Institute has worked with LPC and Boskalis to develop a biosecurity plan.
In Singapore, it will go into a dry dock to be water blasted and have its antifoul refreshed. The interior spaces will be cleaned and flushed with fresh water. After being inspected, it will sail directly to New Zealand.