McDougall's Lift Replacement - ISCouncil

McDougall’s Lift Replacement

Project Details

  • Rating Type: As Built
  • Location: NZ
  • Stakeholders:

This project by Tonkin + Taylor has achieved an 'Excellent' As Built v1.2 IS Rating.


Kaitiakitanga | Guardianship

"At Cardrona Alpine Resort, we know it is our responsibility to be the guardians of our people & place. We look after each other, our mountain & our future and we will do everything we can to make them the best they can be."

Cardrona has made a commitment to be a leader in sustainability. This commitment drives an internal challenge to do better than what we have done in the past, address legacy issues, & look for ways to improve & innovate for the future.

This commitment extended to the 2017 upgrade of McDougall’s Lift, to the high-speed, combined chair and gondola cabin, Chondola. The project is a response to the very real challenges facing the Alpine Resort industry as a result of climate change, and clearly express Cardrona's desire to be kaitiaki / guardians of their maunga / mountain by minimising the physical impacts of construction and enhancing biodiversity as a result of the project.

McDougall's Alpine Chondola is the first piece of Tourism Infrastructure to be rated by ISCA, and the first certified As-Built rating in New Zealand.

"Cardrona has been committed to improving how we can be more sustainable and was looking to find a way to help us learn as an organisation and push our desire to show leadership in the industry.  ISCA provided us with a framework to structure the sustainability objectives we had for the project, and gave us confidence we were focused on the right aspects. Now we can communicate our achievement to our stakeholders, who can also have confidence in our third-party verified achievement. We have shared our experiences with others in the industry and will continue to apply what we’ve learned through this project in our operations and future projects.” 


  • Rating Type Social
  • Registered Date October 2016
  • Certification Date August 2017
  • Practical Completion May 2017
  • Jurisdiction New Zealand
  • States NZ
  • Suburb Cardrona
  • Assessor Monique Cornish and Erica Olesson
  • Capital Value NZD 11 Million
  • Other Stakeholders Tonkin + Taylor, Cardrona Alpine Resort, Doppelmayr Lifts NZ Limited

Rating Highlights

Key areas where the commitment to sustainability can be clearly seen in the project include:

Preparing for the future: Cardrona worked with suppliers to identify the optimal solution that would meet their current and future needs. The chairlift has been replaced with a combined chair and gondola lift that:

  • enables more people to safely access the mountain. Children, beginners, and people with reduced physical ability can use the gondola cabins to access the upper mountain
  • responding to climate change risk by being adaptable to weather and seasons as gondola cabins provide protection in inclement weather.

Proactive approach to reducing waste: The project included removing the old chairlift as well as constructing the replacement. Wherever possible, reuse opportunities were identified for the old chairlift and components were identified on-mountain, this included reusing the chairlift towers, stations, chairs, waste reinforcing steel, waste concrete from chairlift pads, and spoil not suitable for backfill elsewhere in the resort.

Ecological outcomes: The construction area and broader Alpine Resort is in a highly disturbed landscape. During the project some tussock grasses were removed and stored, and a further 3000 have been sourced, and will be planted over the coming season.



Stay up to date!

Stay up to date with our latest publications and news.