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Greater Wellington Urges Developer To Consult Community On Underhill Road Earthworks

Greater Wellington Regional Council (Greater Wellington) is confident in the process it followed, however is calling for the earthworks developer at the Underhill Road site to give locals an opportunity to express their concerns with the activities underway.

The developer at the Underhill Road site is allowed to undertake earthworks under a consent gained from Greater Wellington. Despite recent reports Greater Wellington has not granted consent for a quarry.

Appropriate approvals are required from the South Wairarapa District Council (SWDC) to be able to operate a quarry at the site.

Subsequent to Greater Wellington granting the earthworks consent, SWDC received a consent application for aggregate crushing and stockpiling and will be assessing the amenity, roading maintenance, noise, traffic, and nuisance dust effects which fall under their jurisdiction.

In August 2020, Greater Wellington granted consent to PJ Warren Earthmoving LTD for earthworks and associated discharges of sediment to the land and nearby water at Underhill Road. This consent covered a range of proposed activities and impacts, including assessing effects on surface water quality, air discharges, erosion and sediment run off to land.

An affected land owner was notified and that land owner provided formal approval for the activity to go ahead. Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa and Rangitāne o Wairarapa were also consulted as part of the application process and no concerns were raised.

At the time, the application did not include a digger and earth-crusher on site but Al Cross, General Manager for Environment Management at Greater Wellington says “Under the proposed Natural Resource Plan, the addition of an earth-crusher on the site doesn’t trigger the requirement for a new consent or change of conditions, as long as it doesn’t cause impacts beyond the boundary of the property such as noxious, dangerous or offensive odour, dust or smoke, along with other effects”.

Greater Wellington councillor and Wairarapa Committee Chair Adrienne Staples says, “We’ve advised that the applicant must undertake consultation with neighbouring properties. We’d also encourage SWDC to embark on a similar process.

“Since this activity is of concern to the local community, we see this as the best way to move forward, even though it may not be required for the regulatory process.

“Consulting with the community on this matter is more a matter of good faith and about reaching a reasonable decision for all parties involved,” adds Cr Staples.

For more information on Greater Wellington’s resource consent process, visit: https://www.gw.govt.nz/resource-consents/

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