Northern Busway takes top spot

The first stage of the Northern Busway on Auckland’s North Shore was awarded top honours for a new road project at the 2008 Roading Excellence Awards.

Busway.jpgStage one of the eight kilometre Northern Busway, which was worth $200 million, won the Shell Bitumen Excellence Award for a Major Road Project and took out the Roading New Zealand Supreme Award.

Transport Minister Annette King, who presented the award, says she was delighted to learn that 30 projects vied for these awards – an indication that the industry is in very good shape.

“The awards promote leadership, excellence and best practice in the provision of land transport infrastructure and have showcased just what the industry can do. The winners as well as all the entrants can be justifiable proud of what they have achieved.

“The Northern Busway is a magnificent project which is already paying dividends for Auckland commuters,” King says.

The project, built by Fletcher Construction, Transit New Zealand, Opus, Beca and Connell Wagner, is New Zealand’s first purpose-built road dedicated to buses. The two-lane road adjacent to the Northern Motorway has been designed to provide more efficient public transport for Auckland’s North Shore, and when completed will run from Constellation Drive to the Auckland Harbour Bridge.

The awards judges acknowledged the project was particularly challenging due to its proximity to the motorway and a delicate marine environment, requiring comprehensive environmental, health and safety and traffic management systems to be developed and implemented.

Roading NZ chief executive Chris Olsen says the announcement of the busway project as the Supreme Award winner in the Roading Excellence Awards is very timely given the recent release of the Government’s New Zealand Transport Strategy.

“This strategy’s primary target is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from domestic transport by half per capita by 2040 and the busway provides a tool for doing this by getting people out of cars and into passenger transport.”

Other award winners included the Sundial Square in Richmond’s Town Centre Development, a joint project by Fulton Hogan, MWH (NZ), and Tasman District Council, which won the Goughs Excellence Award for a Minor Road Project.  This project required meticulous planning and attention to detail due to its long linear design and use of large format flags that required very high accuracy.

The InfraTrain New Zealand Industry Best Practice Award for People was won by Downer EDi Works Ltd for TeamWorks, a programme developed to ensure employees have the necessary foundation, leadership and communications skills.  The benefits of this programme have also spread out into the community.

The second SH20 Manukau Harbour Crossing took out the InfraTrain New Zealand Industry Best Practice Award for Procurement.  The innovative collaborative procurement process for this project, put together by Bloxam Burnett and Olliver and Transit, will ensure that the Auckland Western Ring Route, including the widening of the existing motorway, will be ready for hosting the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

The Northern Gateway Alliance was awarded the InfraTrain New Zealand Industry Best Practice Award for Environmental sustainability for work on the Alpurt B2 project, the extension of State Highway 1 from Orewa to Puhoi.  The project, which is thought to be New Zealand’s largest single engineering contract, is committed to environmental and engineering excellence and has adopting a triple bottom line approach to project performance.

Contractor Vol.32  No.8  September 2008
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