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One Mile Powerhouse - Queenstown, New Zealand
Posted by: Groundspeak Charter Member BruceS
S 45° 02.191 E 168° 38.671
59G E 314470 N 5010293
Quick Description: Historic restored powerhouse in Queenstown, New Zealand
Location: South Island, New Zealand
Date Posted: 12/13/2012 8:05:15 PM
Waymark Code: WMFXP8
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member a1elec
Views: 4

Long Description:
From historical marker:

"When an acetylene gas plant was commissioned in Queenstown in 1910, it provided lighting for the streets and shops. Many people then lost the desire to the see the installation of hydro-electric power. It was thought to be too expensive to install. But this did not dissuade the Mayor of the day, Andrew Simpson, to continue to push for it. Power schemes were investigated on the Two Mile Creek, Kawarau Falls, Wye Creek and the Five Mile and all were discarded. But in 1922 the One Mile Creek was looked at and deemed practicable. Ratepayers supported the proposal to fund the scheme with a £7000 loan. One June 23, 1923 the Gasworks blew up, in one of Queenstown’s most memorable events. This served to ensure that the One Mile Powerhouse would be built and on August 14, 1923 a contract was let to Turnbull and Jones Ltd for the 60 kW electric generator, together with Boving 115 h.p. turbine. An intake dam was constructed and pipe laid to the Powerhouse. The work, including the reticulation of power around Queenstown, was completed in 1924, with the grand opening on September 18. 1924. The total cost was £12,000, considerably higher than the original budget."

"History of Electricity in Queenstown

1886 – Hydro-electric power plant established on the left branch of Skippers Creek. Provide power for a quartz-crushing battery at the town of Bullendale. A first for New Zealand, and an early power plant by world standards.

1886 – Julia Eichardt provide electric light to Eichardt’s Hotel, using a Pelton Wheel powered by the town water supply. This was only the second hotel in New Zealand to be powered by electricity.

1892 – First proposals for electric lighting in Queenstown. Considered by the ratepayers as too expensive.

1910 – Acetylene-gas plant installed to provide gas for lighting.

1922 – The Mayor of Queenstown, Mr Andrew Simson, an opponent of the gas plant, investigates a hydro-electric plant on the One Mile. Gets ratepayer support to borrow £7000 to undertake this.

1923 – June 23: Gasworks blows up.

1923 – August: Contract let for generating gear and work begins on the construction of the intake dam.

1924 – One Mile plant completed at a cost of £12,000.

1924 – September 18: Official opening. At 6.30pm the town lights are switched on by Mayoress Mrs Louisa Simson.

1937 – Council purchases a diesel engine and generator from Skippers to supplement the One Mile scheme, which is straining to supply a growing Queenstown.

1944 – A dry season puts a heavy loading on the diesel plant, and it keeps breaking down. The Queenstown Borough appeals to the Otago Electric Board and becomes part of its supply network.

1947 – The diesel plant, for high-use periods, breaks down for its last time. The plant is dismantled for spares and scraps.

1966 – The water rights transferred to Queenstown Borough council for domestic water supply. Hydro generation ceased and the plant dismantled. The end of an era.

2001 – The One Mile Powerhouse, suffering from decay and vandalism, saved from demolition and restored by the One Mile Powerhouse Trust.

2005 – The fully restored Powerhouse, now a static display, is reopened."
Operational: no

Type of power station: Conventional (dams)

Type of turbine: Other/Unknown

Operator: Queentown

Visitor center: no

Date built: 9/24/1924

Generation capacity: 60 kW

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