Design team selected for Ferry Terminal Upgrades

8 February 2022

 Work to upgrade the ferry terminals in Waitohi Picton and Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington has taken a further step forward with the selection of the design consortium to prepare the final designs.

The consortium is made up of two engineering consultancies, WSP and Jacobs. It will take the existing concept design through to final design, ahead of construction starting later this year.

KiwiRail is working closely with its port partners, Port Marlborough New Zealand and CentrePort, on all aspects of the redevelopment project, and with Mana Whenua in Waitohi Picton and Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington to ensure the design recognises the importance of these areas to Iwi.

KiwiRail’s Chief Operating Officer, Construction Delivery Robert Gibbes, says appointing the design consortium is a step forward for the iReX Programme.

“This is a major construction project for New Zealand with ferry terminal redevelopments planned to happen at the same time in both Waitohi Picton and Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington. Working with one design team across both terminals makes sense in terms of efficiency for all aspects of the programme, and it will ensure that it is delivered smoothly and consistently on both sides of the Te Moana-o-Raukawa Cook Strait.

“This is a transformational investment in critical infrastructure which supports a vital freight service and a truly iconic New Zealand passenger experience. This once-in-a-generation investment will generate significant tourism, economic and environmental benefits for the whole of New Zealand,” Mr Gibbes says.

WSP Major Projects Director Darrell Oosterbeek says: “This is an incredible opportunity to be involved in a truly multi-modal infrastructure project, which will have wide-reaching benefits for the local communities, and ports and for national freight, enable broader sustainability outcomes and create a first-class user experience.  WSP Jacobs are proud to be part of the iReX team.”

Jacobs Vice President & Executive Director of Operations, New Zealand and South East Australia, Eva Wood says the upgrade will provide a vital connection for New Zealand that will leave a lasting legacy for Waitohi Picton and Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington.

“This major project will draw on Jacobs' experience to deliver sustainable, low-carbon and customer-focused designs, and our ability to bring local and international rail and maritime expertise to deliver outstanding transportation outcomes to the region," she says.

The ferry terminal upgrades form part of the $1.45 billion Interisland Resilient Connection Programme (iReX) which will also see two new, rail-enabled ferries coming into service in 2025 and 2026. The diesel, battery hybrid ferries will reduce the Interislander’s carbon emissions by 40 per cent once the old ferries are phased out.

The design consortium will deliver designs which will include new terminal buildings in both Waitohi Picton and Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington as well as designs for the wharves for the new ferries, linkspans and elevated walkways, seawalls and scour protection, ground improvements, new rail systems and vehicle marshalling, drainage, landscaping, and stormwater.

Elements of design will be specific to Waitohi Picton and Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington reflecting the unique nature of each location.

The Waitohi Picton port redevelopment was granted consent in May 2021 under the Covid-19 Fast Track Recovery Act 2019.  KiwiRail awaits a decision on its request that the consent application for Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington to also be considered under the Covid-19 Fast Track legislation.