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Environmental Accolades for Grafton Gully

Fri, 16 July 2004

Environmental Accolades for Grafton Gully

Auckland's Grafton Gully Project (GGP) was recently announced winner of the prestigious Institute of Professional Engineers of New Zealand (IPENZ), Arthur Mead Environmental Award.

The regional award, which acknowledges engineering works that have made a significant contribution to the conservation and improvement of the environment, was presented to the Freeflow Alliance and the following IPENZ members: * Carron Blom, Environmental Manager (the Beca group) * Leif Klassen, Stakeholder Manager (the Beca group) * Alan Powell, Design Manager (the Beca group) * Kim Barrett, Project Manager (Fletcher Construction) * Mark Evans, Construction Manager (Fletcher Construction)

Freeflow, which comprises Transit New Zealand, Beca, Fletchers, and Higgins, was a pioneer of the alliancing approach to the delivery of major engineering works in New Zealand with the GGP, which connects Auckland's Northwestern, and Southern Motorways with the Ports of Auckland and the lower CBD. The presentation of the Arthur Mead Award has now also acknowledged the GGP's approach to environmental management.

From the outset, environmental values formed one of the fundamental cornerstones of the GGP. Environmental Manager, Carron Blom, and Stakeholder Manager, Tracey Haszard, both of the Beca group, sat within the Alliance Management Team and environmental and stakeholder teams were established to champion the needs and initiatives of these aspects.

Throughout the project a wide-ranging environmental, stakeholder and educational programme was carried out by the teams, focussing on the 250 project staff and their families, students and school children, stakeholder organisations (including the Auckland Regional and City Councils, local iwi, the Historic Places Trust, local residents and business operators), as well as the 2000-plus visitors that attended the site.

"It is an honour to have the collective efforts of the whole team acknowledged in this way. It is the result of a sustained and enthusiastic effort throughout the project, and the team can be proud at the extent and level to which environmental performance has been raised," comments Carron.

Just some of the environmental initiatives undertaken as part of the project were: * Environmental education and management training for project staff, their children and Auckland primary, secondary and tertiary students * Environmental open days for the project team and their families * Activities featuring the environment (such as a Soap Box Derby using recycled materials for project staff) * Inclusion of subcontractors in environmental performance measures and rewards * The establishment of the Project Information Centre * Presentations to interested community groups * Heritage preservation during construction (the project was named joint
winner of the New Zealand Archaeological Associations 2003 Public Archaeology Award) * Rebuilding and gifting of the Phoenix furnace * Implementation of a 'zero spills' programme inclusive of subcontractors * Trial and implementation of saline flocculation * Successful completion of earthworks over the winter shut down period. * Long-term stormwater management initiatives * Implementation of waste recycling * Urban design initiatives (such as mouldings in concrete roadside barriers, and landscaping and planting programmes) * Public Artworks (such as 'Ropeworks' and 'Maumahara mo Waiparuru - Remembering Ancient Pathways' by artist Caroline Robinson)


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