Petition opposes quarry proposal

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Quarry proposal ... A map accompanying the Taggart Earthmoving application shows the area to be quarried in red.

By ROBYN BRISTOW

A petition opposing a quarry at the Rangiora Racecourse is gaining momentum.

Five days since being set up by Tracey Dimmock-Rump on Change.org, it has attracted just over 2100 signatures.

Tracey is aiming for 2500 signatures in opposition to a resource consent application by Taggart Earthmoving Ltd, to quarry 700,000 cubic metres of material over a 15-year period inside the track at the racecourse and in an outer area to the northeast.

She plans on presenting the petition to Waimakariri Mayor Dan Gordon.

The North Canterbury News reported on July 2 that a resource consent had been lodged with the Waimakariri District Council and that several West Belt residents were angry about the proposal. Their concerns centre around its impact on their lives, property values and retirement plans.

Council regulation manager Nick Harrison said the consent was in its infancy and staff were seeking more information from Taggart Earthmoving Ltd on its application.

The petition says a quarry will affect everyone living in Arlington and West Rangiora.

It asserts all houses, businesses, preschools and parks will be affected by dust and silt from the quarry. “The dust alone will and could cause respiratory issues for locals, let alone the preschool practically bordering the quarry site.

“It will coat roofs, gardens, cars and roads and is going to make a drink at the Five Stags in summer, outside, a no go!”

The petition says increased heavy traffic on River Road will affect all locals who walk their dogs to the river, ride bikes, walk the Rakahuri track or go to the river for a swim.

“It will also make the intersection at the top of West Belt and River Road a lot more dangerous to navigate with the increased truck activity.”

The petition outlines the proposal, which says the quarry will be limited to work around horse training and events.

“Who would want to be near it once the ground is opened and exposed? It also states they will cart gravel for 15 years, but it will be restricting the motor scraper to 30% activity per day and they could start at early as 7am Monday to Saturday.

“So, guess what, the noise will become a factor too! A water cart will be used for dust suppression just great on a howling nor’wester!” Ms Dimmock-Rump says in her summary of the proposal.

People signing the petition have voiced concerns about the impact on people’s health, the environment, people’s property rights, devaluation of properties and the dust nuisance.