Saturday, August 30, 2014

Feet To Overrun Lyttelton Tunnel

Lyttelton Road Tunnel will be taken over by People Power on Sunday 31st for its 50th anniversary.
The nearly 2km route will be closed to cars and trucks tomorrow morning, to celebrate 50 years since the tunnel opened.
The Lyttelton Tunnel (part of S/H 74) runs beneath the Port Hills to Christchurch. It carries just over 10,000 vehicles per day and, at 1,970m, is the longest road tunnel in NZ.
Lyttelton and Chch have been linked by a rail tunnel since 1867 (when completed, that was the first tunnel in the world to go through the side of an extinct volcano!). But at that stage, road transport had to cross over the Port Hills.
Construction of the Lyttelton Road Tunnel cost £2.7 million. The tunnel officially opened in Feb.1964, but tomorrow's 50th annvsy.celebration had been delayed until a new tunnel control building (to replace the previous EQ-damaged one) was completed.
Lyttelton Tunnel will be closed to all vehicular traffic 9.30-12.30pm., so people can get 'up close and personal'. The event begins at 9.30am with the official opening of the new Lyttelton Tunnel Control Building. The tunnel will open at about 10am in both directions for cyclists to go through, followed by skateboarders and lastly walkers – for a gold coin donation. All funds raised will go to Cholmondeley Children's Centre, to provide emergency and respite care for children in Canterbury.
Motorists travelling to/from Lyttelton will need to detour along Dyers Pass and Governors Bay roads until 12.30pm...

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