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Council grants 21 exemptions to keep buildings open

Friday 20 December 2013

Council grants 21 exemptions to keep buildings open

Christchurch City Council has today agreed 21 buildings that are below 34 per cent of the New Building Standard (NBS) should be exempt from its closure policy, allowing them to remain open this summer.

The Council today agreed the buildings, which include a number of toilets, sheds and sports pavilions across the city, should be exempt from its policy of closing non-residential facilities that are below 34 per cent of the NBS. Engineers have advised they are fit to occupy as they have little earthquake damage and are not at risk of brittle collapse in the event of future earthquakes.

Community Committee Chair Yani Johanson says it made sense to keep these buildings open.
“In most cases, these buildings have come in under 34 per cent because they were built before the current building standards came into effect, not because they are structurally unsound.
“All buildings that have been exempted have had a high level of scrutiny on a case-by-case basis by engineers to ensure they can be open with relatively little risk. This is consistent with the approach being taken on building closures by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) and Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA).
“Where buildings have to close, the Council is committed to providing temporary solutions to accommodate the needs of the community as best as it can,” Councillor Johanson says.
Earlier this year, the Council agreed to exempt a number of other buildings from its policy of closing non-residential buildings that are below 34 per cent of the NBS. These included Duvauchelle Community Centre, Okains Bay Community Centre, Little Akaloa Community Centre, Pigeon Bay Community Centre, Port Levy Community Centre, Risingholme Craft Rooms and the Harewood Community Centre.

For a copy of the report that went to today’s meeting and a full list of the exempted buildings click here

A report went to the 6 December 2012 meeting, which sought to change the Council’s occupancy approach. The Council chose not to revise it at that time. However, on 28 February 2013, it agreed to lower the threshold for its social housing complexes to 17 per cent of NBS where the building has no significant damage and no brittle collapse risk.

To see the 6 December 2012 report click here


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