30 August 2007

Opus International Consultants was the recipient of the Silver Award at the prestigious Association of Consulting Engineers New Zealand (ACENZ) Awards dinner, which was held at the War Memorial Centre in Napier.

The Award was made for the work OPUS engineers completed on the seismic safety evaluation and upgrade of the Aviemore Hydro Dam on the Waitaki River. The dam was originally constructed by the Ministry of Works and Development (Opus’ predecessor) in the 1960’s. Although designed for the different foundation conditions on either side of the earthquake fault line, the original dam design made no allowance for any fault movement or destructive wave movement. Opus engineers were engaged by Meridian Energy to assess the likely effects of an earthquake on the dam structure and the surrounding embankments and to make recommendations for strengthening and upgrading.

In their citation the ACENZ judges said the project showed excellent analytical evaluation.

Opus Chief Executive, Dr Kevin Thompson said that they were delighted the project was recognised by their peers and that it again reinforced Opus’ position as a leader in the provision of infrastructural expertise in this country. 

The company is currently engaged in rapid expansion offshore and has gained a number of significant projects in three states of Australia, various provinces in Canada and throughout the UK. Opus now has a number of offices in these countries all of which are experiencing a continued growth in business.

Dr Thompson says that the company’s profitability has increased year on year and that their presence outside New Zealand has grown by a factor of ten over the last five years.

“Our aim is to continue this growth in Australia, Canada and the UK while maintaining our strong position in New Zealand,” says Dr Thompson. “Wins like this ACENZ award provide the recognition that we are providing cost effective and innovative solutions for our clients, using state-of-the-art technology and cutting edge expertise - no matter where we work.”

Opus works throughout New Zealand with Transit New Zealand, local authorities and other clients including electricity generators and suppliers like Meridian Energy for the provision of infrastructure. Other recent infrastructure projects have included the Britomart Transport Centre, the SH20 extension at Mt Roskill and the Esmonde Road/SH1 interchange in Auckland; Wellington’s inner city bypass; the Te Rapa and Cambridge bypasses; the Candys Bend (SH73 Arthur’s Pass) realignment; the Christchurch Southern Motorway; and the realignment of SH1 at Hihitahi (near Taihape).