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Otakaro CEO John Bridgman presents the Contractor of the Month award to Menard Oceania project manager Andrew Vencer

Menard Oceania and March Construction JV recognised for commitment to H&S

Leading geotechnical engineering specialists Menard Oceania and sister company March Construction New Zealand have a good reason to celebrate. Their commitment to workplace health and safety has been recognised.



The Menard March Joint Venture (MMJV) has been named Otakaro Contractor of the Month for their commitment to improving the joint venture’s health, safety, environmental and quality performance onsite and their ongoing support of the companies’ values.

The Otakaro Contractor of the Month award was presented recently by Otakaro CEO John Bridgman to Menard’s Andrew Vencer. Otakaro even shouted the Menard March team lunch, which was a huge hit with everyone!

For the past six months, MMJV has been hard at it, delivering the essential ground improvement works required for the new Metro Sports Facility in central Christchurch, including the installation of 7200 stone columns. When completed in 2021, the Metro Sports Facility will be the largest sports and recreation facility of its kind in New Zealand.

The MMJV team were delighted to win this award in recognition of their commitment to health and safety, which is something that is taken extremely seriously by Menard and March. Both companies are 100% committed to ensuring everyone onsite returns home safely at the end of each day.

Gary Webley from Menard Oceania comments: “The team have been hard at work on preparing the ground for the new Metro Sports Facility since October 2018. It’s great to be recognised by Otakaro for our health and safety efforts while onsite. We are really proud of the work delivered by everyone involved at MMJV and we’re excited to be edging closer to installing our last stone column onsite.”

Safety a fundamental value

Part of Menard’s zero accidents goal is its vision to eliminate risks from all its activities. With teams working with heavy equipment every day, it makes for a hazardous workplace, and if attention to detail has lapsed, accidents can happen quickly.

To make sure everyone is on the same page, regular briefings are held during the day to mitigate the risk of accidents. Menard health, safety, environment and quality director David Maltman says that by making health and safety a fundamental value, it has changed the way they think and how they approach their everyday tasks.

“It is vital we involve our teams, our local teams and our local people at all times,” he says. “Teamwork is important, and their views and opinions really do count. There have been many cases where great and effective ideas have come from engaging with teams.”

Additionally, Menard works closely with its clients like Otakaro to make sure they understand each other’s expectations to ensure health and safety remain at the heart of their day-to-day tasks, Mr Maltman says.

A sense of normality

Covering more than 30,000 sq m, the completed facility will be a central point for indoor sports in the Garden City. With an Olympic-size swimming pool, nine indoor courts, group fitness rooms and a café, the facility will be the go-to place for recreation in the city.

The work Otakaro is doing at the facility, and other projects across Christchurch, will bring back a sense of normality to the city which lost a lot of infrastructure after the earthquakes.


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