East by West electric harbour ferry scoops Gold award

Photography by: Wellington Electric Boat Building

East by West Ferries’ electric harbour ferry has picked up the Green Gold award at The Wellington Gold Awards this year.

Sponsored by Greater Wellington, the award acknowledges a business that has demonstrated excellence in sustainability across their products or projects.

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East by West Ferries scooped the prize for Ika Rere - the first fully electric, high speed passenger ferry in the southern hemisphere.

The locally built vessel, which sails across Te Whanganui-a-Tara, has a passenger capacity of 132, with three crew, an on-board café, and inside and outside seating options.

Nigel Corry, chief executive of Greater Wellington, said Ika Rere was an example to the world.

"Built in a shed in Seaview, this fantastic example of Kiwi ingenuity has put the marine passenger transport industry on high alert across the globe," he said.

"The dedicated team at East by West Ferries have shown what can be done with a common goal, local support, willing partners and outlook focused on sustainability and the future."

Samantha Gain, General Manager for Metlink, said the future was bright for the region’s public transport and environment.

"East by West Ferries are certainly making waves and this signals the beginning of the end for diesel-powered passenger ferries," she said.

"It’s great to see Ika Rere in the harbour, complementing over 100 electric buses on our roads and the Matangi electric trains we have across our region."

To bring the electric ferry to life, from initial drawings to a fully-fledged vessel on Wellington’s waters, East by West created a subsidiary in Wellington Electric Boat Building Company. WEBBC also picked up a Gold award, this time for innovation.

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