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High-risk Wellington buildings given shorter deadline for strengthening

Report from RNZ
Owners of Wellington buildings on key arterial routes are to be told they must strengthen their properties in less than a decade, to minimise disruption in a large quake.

City Councillors agreed today to give building owners on these streets 7.5 years to strengthen and fix them, instead of the usual 15 years. The decision affects 216 earthquake prone buildings.

A city councillor, Iona Pannett, said public safety was paramount.

“The driving force behind the act is about public safety. Given that nearly 40 people tragically lost their lives in Christchurch because of falling masonry, it was decided to look at this type of building,” she said.

Owners of priority buildings are to be notified by December.

Wellington Chamber of Commerce chief executive John Milford said there was unlikely to be any major pushback from owners. However, he said individually owned and tenanted building owners may find it a struggle.

“You will not get huge pushback from the commercial owners … I think where the challenge will be, will be on those tenanted individually owned units and their ability to actually undertake the work that’s required,” he said.

2 comments:

  1. Manny, 12. April 2019, 14:42

    The work the Council is requiring will not serve to “minimize disruption” or make the buildings safe in the event of a large earthquake. Any good geologist would’ve told the council that but I guess they got an engineer instead.

     
  2. greenwelly, 12. April 2019, 16:05

    Now I’m for buildings being strengthened, but I’m also for the council being honest about things too…
    “The driving force behind the act is about public safety. Given that nearly 40 people tragically lost their lives in Christchurch because of falling masonry, it was decided to look at this type of building,” she said.”
    But didn’t the council tell us in October that all the Unreinforced Masonry (URM) in wellington had been strengthened:
    Of the 113 Wellington buildings with dangerous facades, all but one has completed their reinforcing work within their deadline. “It’s a real achievement that the city has reached this milestone,” says Wellington Mayor Justin Lester. “Having the URM elements secured means Wellington is a safer, more resilient place for all of us.”
    Now if they have other reasons please tell us, but don’t tell us the URM has been fixed if it is still an issue…

     

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