Repairs to Christchurch's severely damaged infrastructure have reached the halfway point, Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says.
The Stronger Christchurch Infrastructure Rebuild Team (SCIRT) are on track to have 90 per cent of work completed in the central city by Christmas and all horizontal infrastructure repairs finished by the end of 2016.
Brownlee said the repair and rebuild of the city's roads, bridges and underground services were ''essential in the city getting back on its feet''.
"To be halfway through is great news for everyone, not least for road users having to navigate extensive roadworks every day.
"In Christchurch's central city, things are even more advanced, with 68 per cent of the work completed," he said.
Brownlee said SCIRT's programme was the biggest civil engineering challenge in New Zealand's history.
SCIRT is a partnership between the Government, Christchurch City Council and the contractors carrying out the work - City Care, Downer, Fletcher, Fulton Hogan and McConnell Dowell.
"Special thanks must go to the crews who are working above and below ground, in often trying conditions, to make life better for everyone in Christchurch."
Christchurch City Council chief executive Karleen Edwards said the halfway milestone should be a confidence boost for residents.
"It means we're well on the way to having sustainable and resilient underground services like wastewater and stormwater, so the rest of the city's recovery and future is founded on a solid and secure infrastructure base," Edwards said.
SCIRT general manager Duncan Gibb said the city's horizontal infrastructure work was within budget and on target for completion by the end of 2016.
"Drivers will be pleased to know we expect our work to be about 90 per cent completed in the central city by Christmas 2014, with some structural repairs to bridges and road repairs planned for early 2015."
Completion rates of repairs and replacements include:
- 284 km wastewater pipe (43 per cent of total)
- 14 km storm water pipe (52 per cent of total)
- 48 km fresh water pipe (69 per cent of total)
- More than 355,000sqm of roading (27 per cent of total)
- 94 bridges and culverts (62 per cent of total).
- The Press
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