Distribution of geological materials in Lower Hutt and Porirua, New Zealand
A component of a ground shaking hazard assessment
Geological materials in the Lower Hutt, Eastbourne, Wainuiomata, and Porirua urban areas are mapped and described as part of a multi-disciplinary assessment of seismic ground shaking hazards. Emphasis is mainly on the flat-lying parts of these areas which are underlain by variable Quaternary-age sediments that overlie Permian-Mesozoic age 'greywacke' bedrock. Within the Quaternary-age sediments, the two material types recognised on strength characteristics are:
1) Soft sediments, typically composed of normally consolidated, fine-grained materials (sand, silt and clay), with typical standard penetration values (SPT) of <20 blows/300 mm; and
2) Loose to compact coarser-grained materials (sand, gravel), with SPT values of >20 blows/300 mm.
The total thickness and nature of Quaternary-age sediments in the study areas is described, with particular emphasis on the thickness and geotechnical properties of near-surface sediments. Such sediments are considered likely to have a significant influence on the an1plification and attenuation of ground shaking intensity during earthquakes.
In the Lower Hutt valley, near-surface soft sediments greater than 10 m thick have an areal extent of -16 km2. Such soft sediments underlie much of Petone and the Lower Hutt urban and city centres, and have a maximum known thickness of 27 m near the western end of the Petone foreshore. In the Wainuiomata area, near-surface soft sediments greater than 10 m thick have an areal extent of - 3 km2, and attain a maximum thickness of 32 m. In Porirua, near-surface soft sediments have a maximum thickness of 14 m, cover an area of -2km2, and underlie much of the city centre. In the Lower Hutt valley the total known thickness of Quaternary-age sediments, including near-surface soft sediments is 300 m. Quaternary-age sediments are very much thinner in other areas, with thicknesses of 60 m recorded in Wainuiomata, 10 m in Eastbourne, and 90 m in the Porirua area.
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Copyright (c) 1992 G. D. Dellow, S. A. L. Read, J. G. Begg, R. J. Van Dissen, N. D. Perrin
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