Sunday, November 28

New Antarctic NZ base to be built in Timaru


Timaru has been selected as the construction site for the new $ 344 million Antarctic research base that is expected to involve hundreds of jobs over six years.

No title

Scott Base as it is right now.
Photo: Anthony Powell

Antarctica New Zealand announced that PrimePort Timaru will host the Scott Base redevelopment.

The remodel would replace the existing base with three interconnected buildings capable of accommodating up to 100 people and would upgrade the Ross Island wind farm.

Estimates showed that there would be 170 jobs during peak construction with more than 700 jobs over six years.

Antarctica New Zealand Executive Director Sarah Williamson said PrimePort had the land available to start work almost immediately.

The entire base will be built in the port and then shipped to Antarctica in eight modules on one huge ship.

“Construction in New Zealand allows us to build year-round; Antarctica is dark for half the year. It also means we can test and commission the buildings and make sure everything is working before they head south. “Williamson said.

“Timaruvians will be able to see the construction as it happens.”

Antarctica New Zealand received $ 344 million to rebuild Scott Base and upgrade its wind farm to ensure the new facility was powered by up to 97 percent renewable energy.

It was expected to support New Zealand’s presence in the Ross Sea region of Antarctica for the next 50 years by providing a safe, purposeful and environmentally sustainable scientific research base.

The base would include an accommodation, dining and wellness building, a science and administration building, and an engineering and storage building, built on the same sites as the existing base.

The Timaru District Council would invest $ 1.5 million to improve essential port infrastructure.

Mayor Nigel Bowen said it was an important project for the city and a vote of confidence in the district.

“We have the skills and the talent to support this construction, it is a great opportunity for our community to make a real contribution to the Aotearoa home in the Ross Sea region,” he said.

“Investing in port infrastructure to support bringing this project to our district was an obvious decision for our council.

“This project will bring millions of dollars of investment to our community, benefiting everyone from businesses and subcontractors to lodging and hospitality, and will also provide education and cultural opportunities for our community.

“Watching an Antarctic research station take shape on our doorstep will be a fascinating process, and we know our community will be proud to know that we have contributed our bit to the decades of groundbreaking climate science that Scott Base will deliver.” .

Leighs Construction prime contractor CEO Gary Walker said they would hire staff at Timaru for a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

“Not every day you can build an Antarctic research station in your back door.”

The existing base would be deconstructed and shipped back to New Zealand along with all waste and materials at the end of the project.


www.rnz.co.nz

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *