TERRA FIRMA Engineering Ltd is a specialised consultancy practising in ground and civil engineering based in Nelson, New Zealand.

In any engineering project the stability of the ground and the suitability of foundation designs are paramount. We aim to provide clients with practical, well-engineered solutions to ground related problems.

Our services

We provide high value, professional engineering design services for clients who own or manage, maintain and plan residential buildings, subdivisions and industrial infrastructure.

  • Site investigations
  • Contract administration & project management
  • Construction monitoring
  • Geotechnical reports
  • Engineer to the Contract under NZS 3910:2013
  • On-site wastewater disposal assessments
  • Retaining wall design
  • Landslip damage assessment and remediation
  • Subdivision assessment and site certification
  • Liquefaction assessments

We hold appropriate professional accreditations with Nelson City, Tasman Marlborough, Buller and Grey District Councils.

Who we are

Andrew Palmer

Andrew Palmer

BSc(Hons) MSc CMEngNZ CPEng IntPE(NZ)

The company founder and Principal Geotechnical Engineer, Andrew Palmer, is a civil/geotechnical engineer with over twenty five years' progressive and responsible experience in practice, varying from working with major civils contractors overseas to specialist geotechnical and environmental consultants in New Zealand.

Andrew is a Chartered Member of Engineering NZ and is a Chartered Professional Engineer (CPEng).

Andrew has lived, worked and raised a family in the Nelson area for 20 years and is very familiar with the regional geology and the associated geotechnical issues facing development. He has successfully completed over 1000 projects for local people.

He is a keen ultra-marathon runner, skier, biker and tramper.

Andrew is the principal designer at Terra Firma Engineering Ltd. He was the joint recipient of the Fulton-Downer gold medal for engineering in the role of public service, for his work in Christchurch immediately following the February 2011 earthquake.

Rob Hunter

Rob Hunter

BSc, MSc(Hons), MEngNZ

Rob is a Senior Engineering Geologist and Project Management Consultant with 11 years' experience in both New Zealand and the UK. Throughout his career he has been involved in large and small projects across private and public sectors, which includes projects in land development, civil infrastructure, natural hazards, and transport (road and rail). Rob's technical expertise ranges from site/ground investigations, liquefaction assessments, earthworks design and management, retaining wall and foundation design, and other general geotechnical and civil matters. Rob is also an experienced project, design and contract manager, with a proven track record in delivering successful projects between $2k and $40M in value.

Rob moved to Nelson late in 2017 after returning from the UK. In his spare time he enjoys the outdoors, especially mountain biking, water sports, camping and spending time with his wife and children.