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Friday, January 11, 2013

Earthquake-prone building policy consultation

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (which now includes what used to be the Department of Building and Housing) are consulting on proposed changes to the system for dealing with earthquake-prone buildings.

The focus of the exercise is a proposal that all non-residential buildings and all multi-unit, multi-storey residential buildings have a seismic capacity assessment done within 5 years. Owners of buildings identified as earthquake-prone would then have up to 10 years to strengthen or demolish these buildings.

As potential users of these buildings we have a vested interest in ensuring they are properly assessed and either made safe or demolished as quickly as possible. As in the past there will be tensions between the desire to minimise or defer expenditure and the need for safety.

There is a consultation document available here. The consultation period closes on the 8th of March.

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