Pukenui residents and businesses have temporarily lost their local fuel supplies while the 50-year-old wharf is demolished and a new one built.
Both petrol and diesel have been available from self-service GAS pumps in the wharf carpark, while another pump on the wharf itself provided diesel. Electricity to both was due to be turned off yesterday before demolition work began.
Power is to be reconnected to the carpark pump on May 17, but diesel will not be available on the wharf until the new truck-rated structure is completed in October.
The council's general manager infrastructure and asset management, Andy Finch, said he understood that the loss of fuel supplies would be inconvenient for residents and businesses, but there was no alternative.
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"Unfortunately, electricity must be cut to the site, and this will mean travelling to Kaitaia or further north to Waitiki Landing to fuel up. The interruption to the land pump will be relatively brief, but diesel from the marine pump cannot be reinstated until the new wharf is completed," he said.
Signs had been posted at the wharf warning customers about the interruption to supplies, and council i-Site staff would be warning travellers of the need to fuel up before reaching Pukenui.
The $2.5 million project, which was being jointly funded by the government's Provincial Growth Fund ($1 million) and the council ($1.5 million), included the installation of a new concrete pontoon and gangway, a timber service dock, and facilities to load and unload trucks on the wharf. Repairs would also be made to a seawall.
The Council is also due to replace the 50-year-old timber wharf at Unahi, which will include demolishing the existing wharf, installing a new concrete pontoon and gangway, additional berthing piles and repairs to the seawall. It will be funded through a $1 million grant from the Provincial Growth Fund, with a $600,000 contribution from the council. That project is due for completion by the end of November.
The work is being managed by Far North Holdings, with Ōpua-based Total Marine Services Ltd the head contractor for both projects.