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North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery

Restoring a devastated transportation route after a 7.8-magnitude earthquake

  • 1.75

    Km of Retaining Walls

  • 6

    New Road Bridges

  • 6

    New Rail Bridges

  • North Canterbury, New Zealand

    North Canterbury, New Zealand

Rebuilding a key transportation route is a team effort

In November 2016, the second largest earthquake in New Zealand’s settled history—a 7.8-magnitude event—destroyed the key traffic and rail route north of Kaikōura. Once the dust had settled, it was clear that this core part of the transportation network needed to be up and running as quickly as possible. Thus, an ambitious rebuild program was put in place.

As part of the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) alliance, which managed the project, we provided engineering and project management services. This large and diverse team united the New Zealand Government, local consultants, infrastructure contractors, and key stakeholders including councils, Waka Kotahi, and KiwiRail.

Works included sluicing slips above the road with helicopter monsoon buckets to remove debris and using specialist abseil teams to assess each rock and attach rock anchors and mesh fencing. Already perched on the sea edge, the road needed to be moved closer to the ocean and away from the slip margin with new sea walls. All the rail tunnels required clearing and stabilization, and over 100 road and rail bridges needed extensive repair or replacement.

The NCTIR alliance restored a level of service in the region by rebuilding infrastructure, reconnecting communities, and futureproofing the roading and rail network.

At a Glance

  • Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency
  • NCTIR Alliance
Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), People’s Choice Award, 2018
Safeguard Workplace Health and Safety, Best Collaboration Award, 2019
Meet Our Team

Ioannis Antonopoulos, Technical Director

Caring for our communities means learning all we can about the land and geology where people live and work.

Chris Maguire, Client Development Leader, Water New Zealand

Encouraging excellence in our teams—amazing technical people with broad specializations—is the key to solving our clients’ challenges.
Chris Maguire Client Development Leader, Water New Zealand Read More

Shane Bishop, Principal Water Engineer

My contribution has a direct bearing on the direction of a community, providing the building blocks that set our clients up for success.

Ioannis Antonopoulos

Technical Director

Chris Maguire

Client Development Leader, Water New Zealand

Shane Bishop

Principal Water Engineer

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