Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Future of ‘Wellington’s best building’ decided

Future of ‘Wellington’s best building’ decided

The re-birth of the Wellington Town Hall as the earthquake-strengthened home of a national music centre was unanimously endorsed by Wellington City councillors today.

The national music centre will be developed in collaboration with Victoria University of Wellington, the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO) and Wellington City Council to establish a world-class centre of musical excellence and centre for culture and the arts.

The Town Hall will also be used for civic ceremonies, Council meetings and will again become home to the Mayor’s Office.

The proposal includes quake-strengthening to 100% of the building code and reflects an improved scope of works including basement storage and access, basement toilets and an extra goods lift.
In May, Victoria University’s Council approved initial funding of $10 million for its contribution to the first stage of the project which will refit the internal space for teaching and performances. The NZSO’s Board signed off its part of the project in April.

A survey of around 800 Wellington region residents, conducted as part of the 2017-18 Annual Plan process, found 73 percent in favour of moving ahead with a $89.9 million plan to earthquake-strengthen the 113-year-old building and the creation of a national music centre.

City Councillors will cast their final formal vote on the future of the project at a Council meeting on 28 June.

Work on the strengthening project will start in August 2018 with a view to completion in 2021.

Mayor Justin Lester described the Town Hall as “Wellington’s best building”.

“This is a world-class venue and is a big part of our cultural identity as a city. Wellingtonians have told us clearly they want to see this city landmark reopened and made even better, so that’s what we’re going to do.

“The new music and performance space will strengthen Wellington’s status as the cultural capital of New Zealand and provide our city with an exciting new attraction.”

Victoria University Vice-Chancellor Professor Grant Guilford says redeveloping the Town Hall is the first stage in an innovative project that “creates a powerful three-way partnership between the City and two of Wellington’s leading institutions, Victoria University and the NZSO”.

“Victoria is proud to be part of New Zealand’s capital city, and we are fully committed to this project, which will strengthen local communities as well as growing Wellington’s international reputation as a strong civic-minded and creative capital,” says Professor Guilford.

Christopher Blake, NZSO’s Chief Executive, says: “The concept to bring together the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and the New Zealand School of Music is an exciting and bold one that will bring a huge range of opportunities and benefits for musicians, students, and above all make music accessible to more audiences.

“The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra is a beloved national institution with an international reputation second to none. The Wellington Town Hall is at the very heart of the NZSO’s history – it is where we gave our first performance in 1947.”

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice.

Evidently, the National government is similarly desperate for anything that might discredit or derail the Ardern juggernaut, even if that means throwing Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne under a bus More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>



Mental Health Foundation: 'Positive First Steps'

“The heavy reliance on pilots and targeted approaches in the package announced today makes it plain that additional funding will be needed so that activities that work can be made available throughout New Zealand,” says Mr Robinson. More>>


'Gift' To NZ: Synod Considers Third Christchurch Cathedral Option

Members of the Anglican Diocese of Christchurch will consider three, not two, options regarding the future of the ChristChurch Cathedral... The new option is for the Synod to gift the Cathedral building to the Government for the people of New Zealand. More>>


PM's Presser: Labour's Water Policy 'Reckless', Says English

The Labour Party has "bumbled into" its policy to charge for water in a "reckless" way that would put a Labour-led government on a collision course with both Maori and other water users, Prime Minister Bill English said at his weekly post-Cabinet press conference.. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election