Last week, Te Pūwaha, the Whanganui Port Revitalisation project took another step forward, with works to demolish the concrete foundations of the previous Victory Shed now underway.
Jurgens Demolition have been on site since the beginning of the month, with the works expected to take two to three weeks to complete.
Whanganui District Council’s port project manager Phil Wardale explains the need for the works to be completed prior to Christmas.
“Recent assessments have indicated the concrete slabs which were once located under the Victory Shed are slumping and at risk of collapse. It is important that we remove that risk as soon as possible,” he says.
“We are fortunate to have a local business with the capabilities and expertise to undertake the work for us. Jurgens have even procured a specialist demolition attachment so they can complete the demolition promptly and more efficiently, with the most appropriate equipment.
“Demolition will also include further securing of the site to prevent public access. It’s important for us to convey that the entire port including works site is not a safe place for the general public, especially children and no one should be trying to access the area, or swimming into the property and jumping off wharf structures.
“As with any aspect of Te Pūwaha, materials will be recycled and re-used wherever possible. Concrete will be crushed and remain on site to be re-used, while steel will be removed for recycling.”
Meanwhile, the Whanganui Port Operating Company has been established to manage and oversee port assets, with Declan Millin, Ken Mair and Mark Petersen recently appointed as directors. The Port Operating Company brings Port business experience, industrial expertise and an independent focus to the port as a commercial entity, to produce the best possible financial and strategic returns to the Whanganui District Council, via Whanganui District Council Holdings Ltd.
The Port Company will also be calling for Expressions of Interest later this month for various work packages on the main construction works, including the wharf build, with works expected to begin early 2023.
“To ensure the Te Pūwaha works are accessible to local contractors, we have broken the work down into small packages featuring different elements of the project,” says Phil Wardale.
”One of the key outcomes for the project is to create jobs for local people and we can do that by seeking local businesses to complete the work wherever possible.”
“As with all contracts under the Te Pūwaha project, considerations will include how the contractor will uphold Tupua Te Kawa, the values of Te Awa Tupua, along with broader community outcomes for the town and region, alongside traditional assessments of track record, capacity and capability.
The first phase of wharf rebuild works will focus on significant infrastructure, along with a hardstand and runway suitable for Q-West’s 380 tonne capacity mobile boat hoist which is due to arrive in Whanganui midway through 2023.
For project updates, please visit www.whanganui.govt.nz/port or facebook.com/TePuwaha.