Last chance to put New Zealand on international road and rail-building map: vote for Kaikōura earthquake recovery this week


New Zealanders have a last chance this week to show their support for the outstanding work to restore road and rail networks following the 2016 Kaikōura earthquake by voting in a prestigious engineering award.

The NZ Transport Agency, KiwiRail and the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) alliance are one of just 10 finalists from around the world for the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) People’s Choice Award 2018, for their work to repair and reopen State Highway One and the Main North Line.  Decided by public vote(external link), the awards and voting close on Friday 28 September.

NZ Transport Agency Earthquake Recovery Manager Colin Knaggs says that as a small country New Zealand needs as much support as possible to compete with some of the international projects and it would be great recognition for the crews who worked so hard last year.

“Hundreds of workers spent many months living away from their families to get the South Island’s State Highway 1 back in business and the rail line up and running. They worked in demanding conditions: pouring foundations on the sea coast around the tides through winter, abseiling teams removing boulders from precipitous cliff faces, a small army of chopper pilots with monsoon buckets drenching the cliffs to bring material down in the first few months.

“Anecdotally we have heard we are getting good support for the People’s Choice Award and are well placed, but we need more votes to win this award.

“It was a civil engineering triumph to get the transport networks reopened by Christmas 2017. This award, and even being nominated for it, is recognition of all that effort.”

Ohau Point north of Kaikōura – soon after the earthquake in November, 2016, top shot, and today with the new sea wall and slips cleared back to harder rock, bottom two shots: