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Lyttelton Port Company this week blessed the site of a new amenities building at the dry dock, upgrading the existing structure which was built nearly 140 years ago.
It is slated to become the primary stopover point for seafarers while their ship is repaired in the dry dock. The dry dock is an essential piece of port infrastructure, supporting many businesses in Lyttelton and across New Zealand.
The new upgraded facility will address the insufficient capacity of existing crew and contractor amenities through the construction of a new building, which includes new toilet and shower facilities.
The existing amenities building, at the other end of the dry dock, has been used since its inception, more than a century ago. At times, the old amenities building would have had to cater for up to 100 seafarers in a space no larger than a sports team’s changing rooms.
One of the buildings is so old it is now missing parts of its roof and ceiling.
Replacing the aged infrastructure creates a safer environment for dry dock users. The new location, at the other end of the dry dock, allows LPC to clear the old buildings from the dock side, providing more room for heavy plant and machinery.
On November 3, LPC’s Māori development advisor, Tahu Stirling, blessed the site with karakia and waiata. He was joined by several LPC staff and contractors involved with the project.
“It was great to have those folks out to support the site’s blessing and to have those companies present who have supported us to get the amenities building project off the ground,” Tahu said.
LPC project manager Hannah Fyffe said the new build is an anchor project and part of a wider programme of safety and infrastructure related improvements to be undertaken at the dry dock over the next few years.
“Our seafarers deserve a much better experience than what they are currently getting, so it’s really exciting to be able to provide them with that in the near future,” Hannah said.
The project is expected to be complete by winter 2022. Keep an eye on LPC’s news page for updates.
Karakia mō te whare hōu pākaka / blessing for the new amenities dry dock:
Kia tau te rakimarie
O te Rāki e tu iho nei
O Papatūānuku e takoto nei
O te Taiao e awhi nei
Ki rukā i a tātou
Kia manāki te whare hōu pākaka
Kia manāki kā kaimahi i kā rā katoa
Kia pai te huarahi o tātou
May the peace
Of the sky above
Of the Earth below
And of the all-embracing natural world
Be bestowed upon us all
Protect the new amenities building
Protect the workers everyday
May we all journey well