About Project Reclaim

The Situation

There are 3 coastal contaminated land sites that are in danger of slipping into the sea. Two fly-tipping (illegal dumping) sites on Beach Rd near Awamoa Rd, and the Hampden Closed landfill. The waste from these sites can be received at the Waitaki District Council Palmerston Landfill. 

Beach Rd Sites

beach rd dump slab

The Beach Road Landfills are two historical landfills which were never specifically opened or approved by Council for use as landfill. Located along Beach Road, approximately 3km south of Oamaru. It is thought that the landfills were in “operation” between the 1950’s to 1970’s, although, casual fly-tipping is still prevalent today. The unofficial landfill areas were investigated and partially remediated in 2017 after a complaint by locals regarding rubbish washing out off the cliff face onto the beach. Following the complaints in 2017, approximately 60 tonnes of waste material was removed to Oamaru and the areas were closed. The two Beach Rd sites have a combined volume of approximately 5,000m3.

Hampden Closed Landfill

hampden dump slab

The Hampden Closed Landfill is a former Municipal Solid Waste Landfill that was in operation from 1970 until 1996. In that time, it is estimated it received around 30,000m3 of waste. The Hampden closed landfill site is located at the eastern end of Stafford Street, next to the beach.

The closed Hampden landfill has been subject to coastal erosion exposing previously buried waste, with some waste washing out onto the beach. This meant remedial works were needed to prevent any further exposure of waste and contamination of the beach. The works included removing part of the buried waste and the placement of a rock rip rap slope (1:3) extending from the toe of the landfill onto the beach.

In finding a suitable solution to combat the effects of the coastal erosion, affected parties being the Department of Conservation (DOC) and Kai Tahu Ki Otago Limited (KTKO) were consulted. DOC had concerns over geological features, cone-in-cone concretions and, along with KTKO, about the environmental impact of performing the remedial works. All works were executed in accordance with the associated conditions. During the remedial works, buried waste was transferred from the Hampden closed landfill to the Palmerston landfill. A total of 5,090m3 of compacted waste (including cap material) was transferred between September and December 2009.

It is estimated that there is a remaining volume of around 25,000m3 to be removed.

Why Now?

palmerston landfill slab

Palmerston Landfill consents expire in August 2027. It is not an option to renew these consents. Therefore, council has a finite time in which to take the waste to Palmerston. The nearest landfill that would receive the waste is the AB Lime landfill in Winton, Southland. WDC has been given approval from the Otago Regional Council to receive this waste at Palmerston Landfill.


RFP documentation was published in the first week of February 2023. The successful bidders are Waste Management and Fulton Hogan Waste Management, who will take possession of the site on 1 November 2023.