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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 69



All the ports in New Zealand are provided with wharves and jetties in proportion to the trade. Important works to afford shelter and increase the depth of water have been executed or are in course of construction at eight places—namely, Dunedin, Oamaru, Timaru, Lyttelton, Greymouth, Westport, New Plymouth, and Napier.

The harbours of Oamaru, Timaru, New Plymouth, and Napier are practically in the open sea. They are enclosed by concrete and rubble breakwaters. Two of these only are completed, Oamaru and Timaru. Sixty acres are enclosed at Oamaru, and fifty acres at Timaru, and vessels of large draught can be accommodated at the wharves.

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The works at Dunedin consist of dredging a channel in the Upper Harbour, so that vessels of larger draught can go right up to the city, and the construction of a mole at the Heads to increase the depth of water on the bar. The channel is finished, and the intercolonial steamers and ordinary Home ships now go right up to Dunedin. The mole at the Heads is carried out to a distance of 1,100ft., and the bar is greatly improved, so that the largest Home steamer can go up to Port Chalmers.

Lyttelton Harbour is an inner basin in a sound, which naturally was greatly exposed to certain winds. About 110 acres have been enclosed by rubble breakwaters and dredged out, so that the largest Home steamers can be accommodated.

Greymouth and Westport are coal harbours at the mouths of the Grey and Buller Rivers. The works consist of training walls and breakwaters intended to concentrate the current across the bar, and thereby increase the depth of water. The principal works at Greymouth are nearly finished, and they have proved a complete success. Steamers up to 1,345 tons burden and 16ft. draught are now trading to the port. The works at Westport are still far from completion; but they have already effected a great improvement in the harbour, and promise to be as successful as those at Greymouth, and, in consequence of the river being larger to commence with, larger vessels will be accommodated.

Models and drawings of the Greymouth and Westport Harbours are exhibited in the Public Works Court.

There are four graving-docks in New Zealand, the following being their leading dimensions:—
Length on Floor. Width of Entrance. Maximum Depth on Sill.
Ft. Ft. Ft.
Port Chalmers 330 50 21
Lyttelton 450 62 23
Auckland Old Dock 300 42 14
Auckland New Dock 500 80 33

Wellington has no dock, but there is, instead, a patent slip capable of taking up a 2,000-ton ship.