A new $47-million high-tech maintenance facility project at Linton Military Camp has gotten underway with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern breaking the first ground in appropriate style using a military earth excavator.
The Prime Minister was guided through the mechanics of the operation by a qualified operator after being given a brief on the new Maintenance Support Facility.
The 8,500-square-metre workshop, within an environmentally sustainable and energy efficient building, will provide modern and future-proof maintenance facilities for the wide range of sophisticated equipment the New Zealand Defence Force now uses.
The Linton project is the first of five new logistics buildings being built to replace old and inefficient workshops around the country.
Linton, which services more than 3,000 personnel, is the NZ Army’s biggest camp and is home to its primary operational force, 1 (NZ) Brigade. It is also home to the Army’s biggest workshop that supports several hundred vehicles and the widest range of equipment.
Chief of Army Major General John Boswell said the new Maintenance Support Facility would make soldiers’ jobs much easier.
“The old building was built in the 1980s and is now unsuitable,” he said.
“This new state-of-the art workshop will give us the tools necessary to maintain a high level of readiness, through a dedicated, fit-for-purpose facility.”
A large part of the design brief was for the building to be multi-functional, to have a low environmental impact and to be sustainable.
The new facility has numerous features that promote environmental sustainability, improved energy efficiency and a reduced carbon footprint, including supporting any future investment to diversify electricity supply through the use of solar/wind generation.
The building also has under-floor heating, humidity and temperature controls, EV charging, solar panels and rainwater harvesting.
“Soldiers will also be able to work in comfort with the building being designed with thermal and acoustic controls the old buildings didn’t have,” Major General Boswell said.
“The largest of our trucks will fit inside, there will be drive-through bays, hydraulic vehicle lifts, rolling roads, a gantry crane and even a weapons range to test small arms after repairs.”
The infrastructure upgrade programme will be delivered over four years with delivery based on the most critical pressures within the logistical chain.
Other new logistics facilities include a Maintenance Support Facility at Burnham Military Camp, near Christchurch, and Regional Supply facilities at Linton and Burnham and a Regional Vehicle Storage facility at Linton.