Tonkin + Taylor is delighted to have won the ALDE award for ‘Engineering Excellence and Innovation’ for our Ground Settlement Monitoring system – a significant advancement in construction engineering. Read more here.

Tonkin + Taylor is playing a crucial role in redeveloping the closed David Mitchell Limestone Quarry and processing facility in Lilydale, Melbourne. Our extensive involvement includes providing advice, design services, and field monitoring in various key areas to ensure the project’s success.

We embarked on the challenging task of designing a filling strategy, testing, and monitoring ground settlement, transforming the former quarry into Kinley, a new residential community. This project involves filling a 120 m deep pit while ensuring the ground behaviour is suitable for construction works.

Our expertise extends to the design of pavements, retaining walls, bridge foundations, and retarding basins, all while ensuring compliance with relevant guidelines and standards.

Our transformative ground settlement monitoring system employs sensors that remain underground with no protruding rods, revolutionising traditional processes by providing real-time, precise monitoring. This is crucial for managing the extensive fill required for this project.

Our team conducts comprehensive slope stability assessments and historic landslip risk evaluations, managing slope stability risks within the quarry through detailed analysis, regular site visits, and implementing slope remediation options.

Our environmental team conducted preliminary environmental investigations and prepared a procedure for assessing onsite soils for their suitability for onsite retention and use in filling the pit. This procedure has been implemented throughout the filling works, involving monthly soil sampling and field screening from excavation and filling zones, generating hundreds of data points for statistical analysis.

We also handled on-site crushed rock mix registration in accordance with VicRoads standards, including the conducting of associated rock testing.

Our groundwater recovery modelling and subsequent monitoring is shaping the pit filling methodology and development strategy. Routine groundwater and surface water monitoring has also been carried out during the filling works to assess groundwater chemistry.

We provide on-site supervision and oversee Level 1 Geotechnical Testing Authority services provided by Chadwick Geotechnics throughout the project, ensuring compliance with industry standards and regulations during geotechnical testing activities.

Our comprehensive services in design, monitoring, risk assessment, and on-site supervision ensure the project’s compliance, safety, and overall success.


  • Settlement modelling and back-analysis, utilising modern instrumentation (horizontal profilometers)
  • Development of specification for bulk earthworks within the former quarry pit
  • Site investigation
  • Groundwater monitoring and recovery modelling
  • Design of pavements, retaining walls, and bridges
  • Sewer and retarding basin advice


  • 2017 – ongoing

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