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Tunnels in New Zealand

This list of Tunnels in New Zealand is a link page for any railway tunnel, road tunnel or waterway tunnel, including any hydroelectric intake[?] or tailrace[?] or gun battery[?] tunnel anywhere in the New Zealand. It includes man-made chambers[?] but excludes caves and mines.
  • Note: This list is not exhaustive.

Table of contents

Hydroelectric Tunnels and Chambers

Gun Battery or Military Tunnels

Railway Tunnels

From longest to shortest.
  1. Kaimai - 8879 m - opened 12 September 1978 - at Apata on the East Coast Main Trunk Line to Tauranga[?].
  2. Rimutaka - 8798 m - opened October 29(?) 1955 - between Upper Hutt (Wellington) and Featherston (Wairarapa), replaced the Rimutaka Incline[?], a Fell[?] mountain railway.
  3. Otira - 8566 m - opened 1923 - between Arthurs Pass and Otira, in the Southern Alps on the trans alpine South Island Midland Line - continuous 1 in 33 grade - electrified until 1990s.
  4. Tawa No. 2 - 4324 m - opened 1935, goods on 1 line, 1937 all traffic - longest double track tunnel in New Zealand. Between Wellington and Tawa.
  5. Tikiwhata - 2989 m - opened 1943, between Wairoa and Gisborne[?].
  6. Lyttelton - 2596 m - opened 1867, between Heathcote valley, (Christchurch) and Lyttelton.
  7. Turakina - 2091 m - opened 1947, between Marton and Wanganui[?].

Shortest Tunnels not constructed by the cut and cover technique

  1. A 39.83 m long tunnel - opened 1906, between Staircase and Avoca, South Island Midland Line.
  2. A 42.05 m long tunnel - opened in 1891, near Woodville, in the Manawatu Gorge.

Some Disused Railway Tunnels

  • Cruickshanks Tunnel - opened January 1 1878, between Mangaroa and Upper Hutt.
  • Mangaroa Tunnel - 152 m - opened January 1 1878, at Tunnel Gully recreation area, Te Marua, Upper Hutt.
  • Summit - 584 m, and 3 other shorter tunnels, opened October 12 1878 on the Rimutaka Incline walkway.

Sources for Railway Tunnels:

Road Tunnels

  • Homer Tunnel, between Hollyford Valley and Milford Sound, Fiordland
  • Lyttelton Road Tunnel, between Lyttelton and the Heathcote valley in Christchurch
  • Karori Tunnel, Kelburn Wellington
  • Victoria Tunnel, Mount Victoria, Wellington
  • Hataitai - bus tunnel, Mount Victoria, Wellington
  • The Terrace Motorway Tunnel, under The Terrace, Wellington
  • There are 2 short road tunnels on State Highway 1, on the coast a few kilometres south of Kaikoura

See also: List of Tunnels of the World.



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