New travel lift under assembly
The key piece of machinery for the Tauranga Marine Precinct, the largest travel lift in the country, is undergoing assembly on the precinct’s new hardstanding.
Describing it as a $2 million jig saw puzzle, project director Phil Wardale says a team of local engineers under the supervision of a representative from the manufacturer Cimolai, are assembling the travel lift.
He won’t put a date on when they will be able to test drive the travel lift around the hard stand area.
“We are targeting Easter, but I don’t talk about dates any more with projects like this because I get caught out, and with Cyclone Hola coming on Monday, maybe I’ll save my money on the cranes and have a day inside.
“We’ve got a good team putting it together, five people with the engineer. We had a good sunny day to start and we have kicked off with a good spring in our stride.”
Depending on weather, the 140 tonne travel-lift will take approximately five weeks to assemble. Once assembled the 15m high machine will go into a testing phase and is expected to be commissioned in April.
The 6,300 square metre heavy-duty pavement has cured and is ready to take the weight of the travel-lift and its maximum load, says Phil.
The concrete work on the inland lifting bay, the travel-lift runways and the adjoining maintenance wharf is complete.
Arrival pontoons have been installed outside the travel-lift runways, providing an arrival point for vessels using the travel-lift.
Construction is progressing on the state of the art treatment plant that will handle the stormwater and washwater from the entire hardstand area, and allow recycling of the water blasting water.
Den Place, the main internal road, is being realigned. A number of finishing touches such as fencing, signage and electrical work will be brought to the precinct before it is opened in the autumn, says Phil.
“The Marine Precinct construction site has been a hive of activity for the past year or so. Now all HEB’s and our hard work is coming together. We’re on the home straight and it’s really exciting.”
Max Mason, Chair of the Economic Development and Investment Committee, shares in Council staff’s anticipation at this important milestone.
“Local companies have co-invested in the precinct, by buying land there to build their businesses. The superior machine our project has delivered will make their investment really worthwhile” said Max.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the travel-lift in action,” says Max. “I’m guessing it’ll be pretty impressive, as the biggest of its kind in the country.”
The machine will be able to lift boats up to 350 tonnes, 12m wide and 45m long. It will enable large commercial fishing vessels, work boats, fast ferries and even superyachts to be serviced by the businesses establishing themselves around the precinct.
The Cimolai Technologies travel lift parts were unloaded from their containers at the marine precinct site over the weekend.