Kaikōura’s earthquake recovery has won one of the most prestigious engineering awards in the world.
Significant damage to roads, railway and harbour infrastructure
On 14 November 2016, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck New Zealand’s South Island, roughly 60km south-west of the coastal town of Kaikoura.
194 kilometres of road and 150km of rail around Kaikōura were damaged with large sections of the rail line pushed into the sea.
The earthquake caused significant damage throughout the upper South Island and parts of Wellington, where the main port suffered significant damage.
The rebuild along the Kaikōura coast which took 2 million work hours and cost $1.1 billion and was crowned the winner of the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) 2018 People’s Choice Award in London.
It defeated other major projects from Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, India and Nepal after about 70,000 people voted around the world for their favourite civil engineering project.
The rebuild was carried out by North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR), comprising the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA), KiwiRail and several contractors.
Waka Kotahi approached Aurecon for a design concept that would increase the safety, reliability and amenity for a 60km stretch of this challenging coastal route.
The Main North Line Kaikoura Earthquake recovery project has been garnering a number of industry recognitions, including:
- Winner: Engineering New Zealand ENVI Awards, Engineering Impact Award – 2019
- Winner: Engineering New Zealand ENVI Awards, Supreme Award – 2019
- Winner: American Railway Engineering and Maintenance of Way Association’s (AREMA), WW Hay Award for Excellence – 2019
- Winner: Association of Consulting Engineers New Zealand (ACENZ) Innovate Awards, Silver Award of Excellence – 2019
- Winner: Railway Technical Society of Australasia (RTSA), Biennial Project Award – 2018
- Winner: Institute of Civil Engineers UK Awards, People’s Choice Award – 2018
- Finalist: International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association International Tunnelling Awards, Project of the Year including renovation (up to $50M) – 2018
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