Planned gravel pit 'a threat to gem'
An Otatara resident angry about a proposed gravel pit near Lake Murihiku claims more research is needed to protect the surrounding environment which he describes as a "gem".
The Invercargill City Council has asked for submissions on a resource consent application from Charles Kidd to extract up to 5000m 3 of gravel a year for 15 years from a 6.4 hectares on Hughes Rd.
The pit will be beside Lake Murihiku, in Otatara.
Kerry Crooks, whose property borders the pit site, said he did not believe Mr Kidd had done enough research before applying for the resource consent, and he believed the proposed pit could ruin the lake.
The lake levels had remained steady through the past two dry summers, leading him to believe it was fed by an underground stream which could be damaged by gravel excavation, he said.
He had also been told by neighbours that the road could not cope with a lot of heavy traffic.
He believed the consent application did not contain geology research and there were inconsistencies about how far Mr Kidd would extract gravel from the lake.
"If the council lets this happen, it just goes to show what a real pushover they are. When we've got a gem like this it needs to be looked after."
The council had only notified eight surrounding properties of the application and he believed the wider community should be consulted.
"We came out here to enjoy the quiet life and enjoy the environment."
Invercargill City Council environmental planning director Pamela Gare did not return calls yesterday and Mr Kidd could not be reached for comment.
Submissions on the resource consent application close on March 18.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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