PUBLISHED : Sunday, 28 May, 2000, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 28 May, 2000, 12:00am

I refer to the letter from Dayle Purcel headlined 'Pointless' (Sunday Morning Post, May 7) concerning the shotcreting of several large areas of rock slopes of Victoria road.

The use of shotcrete is actively being kept to a minimum on this project. However, in certain circumstances, shotcreting is the most viable option to prevent the long-term deterioration of the rock slope face causing local rockfalls. The slopes Mr Purcel refers to have all been inspected and analysed by qualified engineers. Owing to the very fragmented nature of the cut rock face over certain areas of these slopes, shotcrete was considered to be the most appropriate method for preventing rockfalls. The complete slope faces have not been shotcreted, and wherever possible the sound rock face has not been covered.

To the casual passerby, it may appear that the full face of the rock slope has been shotcreted, as the overspill of shotcrete is still present. This will be cleaned off in due course to expose the natural rock face.

On areas of the slopes where a soil face is present, hydro-seeding with a variety of planting will restore vegetation. In addition, at the toe of most of the new slopes, there is extensive soft landscaping to provide an end product which is both environmentally and visually acceptable.

W. H. LUK Senior Engineer, Highways Complaints Highways Department