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Quarries in Christchurch: A History

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On first glance, it may appear Christchurch’s quarrying and shingle pit history can only be found in the pages of old archives, but take a closer look; its mark lingers in parks, reserves, buildings, businesses, and street names which surround us. So sit back and have a gander at the pits once situated throughout our beloved garden city.

Or, for a full timeline view, see our 'Quarries over time' page. 

Quarries in Christchurch
Fulton Hogan values
  • What are hours of operation that Fulton Hogan is applying for?
    Hours Duration Range of activities 6.00 am to 7.00 am Monday to Saturday: Load out of trucks and truck movements, site pre-start up including operational warm up of conveyors and machinery. Cleanfill deposition. 7.00 am to 6.00 pm Monday to Saturday: Full range of quarry activities. 6.00 pm to 8.00 pm Monday to Saturday on 150 days per annum: Full range of quarry activities except mobile plant processing and working of cleanfill. 8.00 pm to 6.00 am Monday to Saturday on 60 nights per annum: Load out of trucks and truck movements, and ancillary activities such as operation of weighbridge and site offices and cleanfill deposition. Sunday and public holidays For up to 15 days per year Load out of trucks and truck movements, and cleanfill deposition. At all times, dust suppression, operation of weighbridge, office activities, site security and light maintenance as required. NB: ‘Cleanfill deposition’ above, means the unloading of cleanfill at the site, but not the working of cleanfill. Refer to Evidence of K Bligh project and consent conditions
  • What is the minimum separation (distance between processing plant and residential area)?
    The proposed quarry will be 700m from the Templeton subdivision (at the boundary) with the processing plant being over one kilometer away. The nearest neighbour is expected to be over 400m away from the fixed processing plant and extraction to be over 100m away from any neighbor who has not provided their written approval. All fixed processing plants will be located within the middle of the site and will achieve a minimum setback distance of 500m from the quarry site boundary. Additionally, any mobile processing plants which may be needed from time-to-time will be located at least 250m from the quarry site boundary. Refer to Sections 4.3 and 4.4, and Figures 7 and 9 of the AEE in the Application Report
  • Will there be more trucks on the road?
    On the busiest day, there will be 600 truck movements in, and 600 truck movements out of the proposed site, and that is the maximum number per day. The current Pound Road quarry weigh bridge sales indicate that on average, there are only 525 trucks in and 525 trucks out per day. We know that our truck numbers increase from 6am through to 9am, where they level out until 3pm and then decrease further until 6pm. Based on an analysis of destinations for the quarry material, 90% of these trucks will go directly out to Main South Road (which is part of State Highway 1) and head east into Christchurch City on the arterial road network. They will use the new roundabouts proposed on Dawsons at Jones Road and Main South Road. The roundabouts will offer a much higher level of safety and efficiency than is available at the existing intersections on Dawsons Road, and avoids the need for trucks to travel on local roads through Templeton for access to Christchurch. We are also proposing that any truck movements through Templeton will be restricted to those visits and deliveries involving projects in Templeton only. The Stantec analysis predicts approximately 3 to 5 heavy traffic movements per day on Jones Road towards Templeton, and this is only predicted to occur during times when there are local destinations requiring quarried material. It is noted that some of the quarry truck movements will replace movements currently generated by the Pound Road quarry, particularly in the west part of Christchurch. This is because the Roydon Quarry will effectively ‘replace’ the current Pound Road quarry. Other trucks will travel to local destinations in the Selwyn District, which are mostly in Rolleston and Lincoln. As a variety of routes will be used, including Main South Road to Rolleston, the increase in truck volumes on local roads will be small. Refer to Sections 6.1, 6.2 (and Figure 6.2), 7, 9.3, 13, 17.1 and 17.2 of the Integrated Transportation Assessment for further details (APPENDIX C to the AEE) and further Evidence of A Metherell Refer to Sections 4.9.3 and 9.0 of the AEE in the Application Report
  • What is Fulton Hogan going to do to minimise dust leaving the site?
    Fulton Hogan pro-actively manages dust in their quarries. They are confident that the effects of quarry activities can be confined and managed within the proposed Roydon Quarry site itself. At all Fulton Hogan sites a range of measures are used to mitigate and monitor potential dust generation, including: - Limiting the area we open for extraction at any one time - Sealing roadways and speed restrictions - Using field conveyors to move material - Using foggers and misters - Planting more trees around the perimeter - Using water-carts for dust suppression Fulton Hogan’s goal is “no dust beyond the boundary of the site”. The latest technologies will be used, such as the ones seen in the video at Miners Road, in order to mitigate any nuisance dust. We will also use advanced weather monitors on and off site so that if extremely high winds are predicted, we can shut down the operation if necessary, as we currently do at our operational quarries. Refer to Section 6.4.2 of the AEE in the Application Report Refer to Section 7.0 and the ‘Dust Management Plan’ contained in Appendix B of the Air Quality Assessment (APPENDIX D to the AEE) and further evidence of R Cudmore
  • Why apply to have a quarry here?
    The proposed Roydon Quarry is a direct replacement for Fulton Hogan’s existing Pound Road Quarry, which has a remaining life of approximately four years, depending on demand, as this site is now nearly exhausted of extractable aggregate resource. The Pound Road Quarry has operated alongside the Templeton, Islington, and Hei Hei communities for the past 30 years. Owing to the demand for aggregates generated by the Christchurch rebuild, aggregate resources within Christchurch have been depleted at a quicker rate than they otherwise would have been. The proposed Roydon Quarry is well located to provide supply to southwest Christchurch, where there is a shortage of material. In searching for suitable sites, we have looked extensively west of Christchurch. Constraints on sites include zoning and overlays, such as ecological and landscape values and the proximity to sensitive land uses. It is also generally accepted that it is difficult to gain approval to quarry publicly owned land. The Jones Road land has been chosen by Fulton Hogan primarily because it has a high quality aggregate resource, relatively few direct neighbours with dwellings in close proximity to the site, and good access directly onto Main South Road and State Highway 1. Reliable supplies of aggregates are needed as a vital component in constructing everything from roads, cycleways and railways to water networks and housing. The further the aggregates need to be trucked the higher the cost – and these costs are passed on to consumers – who range from government, councils, developers and residents. Christchurch city is planning on spending an estimated $4.3 billion in planned capital works. Ready access to a reliable, long-term and local aggregate supply will reduce the costs burden of major infrastructure and building projects on all residents of Canterbury. The proposed quarry sits within the Selwyn district – the third fastest growing district in New Zealand. Relevant article: Housing shortage looming for Christchurch Refer to Sections 2.1 to 2.3 of the AEE in the Application Report
  • Will this adversely affect ground water?
    No. The protection of Canterbury’s groundwater is of the utmost importance and consent conditions set out by Environment Canterbury and Selwyn District Council for the operation of quarries, clearly reflect this. The proposed Roydon Quarry will stay above the ground water table and is outside of the Christchurch Groundwater Protection Zone. Fulton Hogan is committed to not extracting below 1m above the seasonal high groundwater level on the proposed site, and will ensure that all backfill is cleanfill only, and drinking water supplies will not be affected. Water quality testing will continue once operations commence on site to assess any changes which may occur in groundwater quality, which may be caused by onsite operations. Fulton Hogan has included a monitoring programme in the resource consent application to this effect. The Roydon Quarry operations will include other measures to further mitigate risks to groundwater, such as for the storage and use of any hazardous substances and washing of vehicles, the implementation of a Spill Management Plan; and removal of any contaminated soils from the site prior to undertaking any work in such areas. In terms of quantity, Fulton Hogan has chosen not to transfer water takes to this site and instead rely on the volume of water provided through existing take for the site (which currently provides for irrigation). To accommodate quarry operations under the existing water permit, we have sought to provide for use of this water for quarry operations (including dust suppression and aggregate washing). Should any additional water be required for quarry operations, capturing stormwater remains a sourcing option for the future. Refer to Sections 5.3.3, 6.2.3 (including all sub-sections), 6.2.4 and 9.0 of the AEE in the Application Report Refer to Sections 5.0 and 6.0 of the Cleanfill Management Plan (APPENDIX F to the AEE) Refer to Section 7.3 of the Combined PSI-DSI report (APPENDIX H to the AEE)
  • Is the Templeton community at risk from silica dust exposure?
    No. Fulton Hogan simply would not operate if it could not manage dust or Respirable Crystalline Silica (RCS) exposure. Craig Stewart, Fulton Hogan’s South Island General Manager has said: "There is no way they would be proposing this operation if there was a serious risk to people’s health". To put it in perspective, there is no appreciable difference between the risk of silica dust exposure in Templeton compared with the risk to people living in Christchurch. Craig Stewart has also said: "The safety of Fulton Hogan staff working in the quarry is also paramount and there is no way they would expose any of their staff to a health risk". The Canterbury Medical Officer of Health Dr Ramon Pink concluded after looking at a nine month Quarry Air Quality Monitoring Programme around the Yaldhurst area, that there is no serious public health risk to residents from airborne dust. This study related to a much greater quarry open area, and given the comparison between the Yaldhurst quarries and the proposed Roydon Quarry, the risk to residents adjacent to the Roydon quarry is expected to be lower still.
  • Why can’t you establish this quarry in a more remote part of Canterbury?
    Reliable supplies of aggregates are needed as a vital component in constructing everything from roads, cycleways and railways to water networks and housing. The further the aggregates need to be trucked the higher the cost – and these costs are passed on to consumers. Christchurch city is planning on spending an estimated $4.3 billion in planned capital works. Ready access to a reliable, long-term and local aggregate supply will reduce the costs burden of major infrastructure and building projects on all residents of Canterbury. The proposed quarry sits within the Selwyn district – the third fastest growing district in New Zealand.
  • Why can’t you just take more gravel from river beds, especially the Waimakariri?"
    There are limits on the amount of aggregate that can be removed from the region’s rivers (set by ECan) and at present the Waimakariri River is over allocated, with Fulton Hogan unable to access its long term consent at Coutts Island. While the Waimakariri looks like it has lots of gravel, removing too much can undermine infrastructure near the river, including bridges and stopbanks for flood control.
  • Will a new quarry mean an increase in noise levels in our district?
    Noise levels within the quarry form a part of the resource consents (if granted). It is expected the quarry will be designed strategically so there will be larger distances separating noisier operations from the community around it. We will be ensuring best practice applies along with all other aspects of the quarry’s operations.
  • How does Fulton Hogan propose to quarry the site?
    The proposed quarry site will be excavated in sections, ultimately this will be determined by the resource consent process. However to give an idea operations will likely begin in the centre of the site and then move out toward Dawsons Road and then in stages toward Jones Road initially. Quarried parts of the site will be rehabilitated during the quarry’s lifetime, depending on what plan of remediation is decided.
  • How much of the site will be actively worked on?
    No more than 26 hectares is expected to be actively worked on at one time and will ultimately be decided through the consent process. An active working quarry area includes working extraction faces and adjacent operational areas, stockpiling, load out areas, haul roads and field conveyers.
  • What will the quarry look like from the road?
    The proposed quarry will not be able to be seen from the roads around the proposed site, as small hills (bunds) will be formed around the site boundary to hide the activity from public view and reduce noise. We are working on a visual concept design to best display these bunds in the most attractive way. A three-metre-high bund has been proposed for the Roydon Quarry, with one metre width at the top. Native plants will likely be planted in rows along the bund and encourage some reintegration of the plants back into Templeton. The bunds will also prevent the quarry being easily viewed from entry and exit points, and these are expected to be in place before any potential quarry operations start. Refer to The Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment
  • When will the quarry begin operating, if consented?"
    It is expected that the quarry will only begin operations once roads around the entry and exit of the proposed quarry have been upgraded to ensure there is a safe access route, and measures such as bunds have been put in place to mitigate environmental impacts.
  • What is Fulton Hogan doing to engage with the residents and what will you do with their feedback?
    Fulton Hogan has been in touch with community association representatives and has engaged directly with residents to work through questions and listen to any concerns. We wanted to hear residents’ feedback, which has greatly helped to influence our proposed operation and the consent applications compiled. We also set up a Community Advisory Group (CAG) with representation from a cross-section of neighbours, businesses and community associations. Fulton Hogan has been providing up to date information on this website and has also established a drop in centre at 220 Jones Road for people who would like to talk to Fulton Hogan representatives directly. They have made information easy to access and having information on this site, along with a drop in centre with varying open times, has enabled a wider group of people to have access to that information. Feedback can still be given in person, through the ‘Share your thoughts with us’ section on this website, or by emailing For further information regarding your particular community you may like to contact the Yaldhurst Rural Residents Association, Templeton Residents Association, or the Weedons Residents Association. “We recognise and understand that some of the residents are concerned about the impact the quarry might have on the community. We have a lot of information including proposed site lay out, latest technology looking at issues like wind direction and weather monitoring and new technology on display like water fogging and misting machines which stop any dust leaving the site. I’m hoping that hearing this information from our experts will allay any fears they may have.” “We wanted to be really open and honest with the community and that’s why we went directly out to Templeton and invited Weedons to the drop in centre over four days of one on one engagement, so that we could give people every opportunity to come and talk to us and engage in a meaningful way.” “We see this quarry as a “site for the future” and we have a big responsibility to get this right.” Fulton Hogan Roydon Quarry Information Days have now been completed, but we will run further days once the consent is fully notified.
  • What will Fulton Hogan do with the land after it has finished quarrying the aggregate from the site?
    Fulton Hogan will rehabilitate the proposed Roydon Quarry and make it fit for some other purpose. We expect this will be a condition on any application for consent at Jones Road. This is an opportunity for residents to have their say as to what they want to see happen with the land. It is expected that most of these remediation options could be undertaken while the quarry is still operating (rather than left to the end). We believe these remedial actions will enhance the amenity and landscape values of the surrounding area.
  • How has Fulton Hogan remediated other quarry sites?
    We have a history of sustainable quarry rehabilitation. A former Fulton Hogan Quarry operating in Renwick, Marlborough, has since been converted to a winery alongside Lake Chalice Wines, winning the Ministry for the Environment’s Green Ribbon to recognise their contributions to protecting and enhancing New Zealand’s environment in 2004. In 2015, the MIMICO Environmental Bronze Award was given to Fulton Hogan’s Gore Crushing site, for its riparian planting of the area, which adjoins the Mataura River. This was a two year project. 1000 trees, flax and shrubs were planted each year and sourced from local nurseries. Our intention is to pass the Gore Crushing site onto the community once the quarry activities finish.
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