The large crane at the Memorial Park Underpass construction site is about to be christened with a new name, courtesy of the children of Mount Cook School, as the site gets ready for the milestone of the 'big dig'.
The Memorial Park Alliance says Mount Cook School have taken up an invitation to name the crane at the Buckle Street site, where the NZ Transport Agency, on behalf of the Alliance, is undertaking construction of a new underpass to accommodate Memorial Park.
NZ Transport Agency Wellington state highways manager Rod James says the school and the project team will together unveil the new name tomorrow afternoon. The crane has a 70t capacity crane and a 54.9m boom, and will be joined in around six weeks time by its heavier 100t sibling, which the school are also naming.
Mr James says the school has been enthusiastically involved in the project since the get-go.
“Mount Cook School have been fantastic neighbours, and have actively participated with the project team since the beginning.”
“We certainly hope that we can help inspire pupils to learn about the topics relating to the project; everything from the history and cultural aspects through to design, construction and the use of the site afterwards.”
Mr James says the pupils have also take part in a drawing competition capturing their early impressions of the work. The drawings are to be enlarged and displayed along the sound wall along the pedestrian walkway which protects the school from the interim road.
Meanwhile, Mr James says the project itself is running very smoothly and on time.
‘The team have made extraordinary and visible progress in just a matter of months. The crews all deserve a big pat on the back – this is a huge effort, and a complex job, and they’ve made it look deceptively easy.”
Mr James says excavation will begin soon on the trench itself that will carry traffic under Memorial Park. Over the last couple of months, the crews have been busy getting the site prepared for the big dig, such as the diversion of services and the construction of a ‘haul road’ to allow cranes and trucks to excavate and haul the earth from the trench. A combination of king posts and sheet piles are currently being placed which will hold up the sides of the trench during the upcoming excavation, which should begin next month.