Consent dispute on work at Carisbrook

Contractors for Calder Stewart continue work at the former Carisbrook site yesterday. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
Contractors for Calder Stewart continue work at the former Carisbrook site yesterday. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
Constuction company Calder Stewart faces enforcement action after kicking up a dust cloud with ''illegal'' work at the former Carisbrook site in South Dunedin.

Claims about the legality of the work are disputed by Calder Stewart.

The earthworks began before Christmas, as a contractor working for Calder Stewart began trucking in material to begin preparing the former sports ground for an industrial development.

A site neighbour, Auto Court car yard owner Neil Cottle, this week complained to the council and the Otago Daily Times, saying the work was illegal and the contractor had failed to control dust.

Dunedin City Council senior planner Phil Marshall said when contacted yesterday Calder Stewart had failed to obtain an earthworks consent, which was required for deliveries of more than 100cu m of fill to the site.

The company's contractor appeared to have delivered ''well over'' that amount, despite earlier assurances from Calder Stewart that material would not be brought in from off-site, he said.

An abatement notice would be considered and could be issued within days, forcing the company to stop work until retrospective consent was obtained, Mr Marshall said.

Further action could also not be ruled out.

''It is disappointing to see a professional company that does a lot of land development not complying with the rules,'' Mr Marshall said.

Calder Stewart development director Alan Stewart, contacted by email, disputed the
claims yesterday.

He initially insisted the work was permitted as part of building consents obtained by Calder Stewart in 2013 for the demolition of Carisbrook.

Challenged by the ODT, he then said the contractor had ''an agreement'' with council staff permitting the earthworks.

Mr Marshall said the situation was clear - consent was needed.

''If they haven't got a consent, we need to take compliance action.''

Mr Cottle was pleased to see signs of progress in developing the site, which Calder Stewart bought from the council for $3.5million in 2013.

''We welcome any activity to get a neighbour on to the site, but we'd like to see the people who are building it, or doing any work on it, complying with the regulations. It's that simple.''

Dust had been blowing off the site ''terribly'' before Christmas, and again this week, affecting nearby homes and the vehicles in his car yard.

The company's contractor was supposed to spray water to control the dust, but had been ''doing nothing'' until Mr Cottle complained, he said.

That had resulted in a single visit by a spray tanker late last month. A second truck was on site yesterday after Mr Cottle again complained this week.

''This is just a very feeble attempt,'' he said.

Mr Stewart again declined to answer questions about the company's plans for the site, including whether the earthworks indicated a tenant had been confirmed.

Mr Marshall confirmed no resource or building consent applications had been received, and he was not aware of the company's plans.


Get in the dust suppressants, or what silly people call 'fascist trucks'. Mix anionic surfactant with the water, neutralising dust.

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