Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Report Offers Building Owners More Certainty About Standards


Report Offers Building Owners More Certainty About Standards

Building owners now have more certainty about earthquake-prone building standards and acceptable levels of stability and safety, according to Property Council New Zealand.

Today’s release of Volume 4 of the Canterbury Earthquake Royal Commission’s final report on building failure during the Canterbury earthquakes and the Government’s draft proposals to improve the earthquake-prone building system provide some welcome recommendations, after months of analysis and industry consultation.

Property Council’s chief executive Connal Townsend said the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment [MBIE] consultation document focuses on acceptable levels of risk and protecting people from harm.

“Consequently, it recommends ensuring all buildings are assessed and where necessary, strengthened to meet 33 per cent of New Build Standard within a 15 year timeframe. The document appears to balance practical solutions with the highest safety benefits.

“The Government’s extensive consultation has resulted in a policy where tenants will ultimately influence building standards by demanding high standards of earthquake strengthening. An improved risk assessment of a building during an earthquake includes a new graduated scale that will allow the public to be much better informed about a building’s level of resilience. Owners of low resilience buildings can be forced into remedying or removing it.”

Mr Townsend said the Government’s proposed timeframes for strengthening took into account that hundreds of thousands of buildings in New Zealand could not be strengthened overnight. “A lack of skilled engineers and legal issues to do with lease agreements are just two issues which tend to affect progress.”

Under the proposed changes, local authorities would have five years to complete a desk top assessment of buildings. “Once we know the scale of work needed to upgrade building stock, we will have a better understanding of the cost. What we do know is that this will cost our industry - our country - billions of dollars to address.

“The Government conservatively indicates a $1.68 billion cost to strengthen all buildings under the proposed system. This will largely fall on building owners - already bearing huge costs because they cannot claim tax depreciation for a building structure.

“Owners of heritage and character properties in particular, will find the cost of earthquake strengthening prohibitive. If we want to prevent owners from walking away, leaving properties vacant and tenantless, the Government needs to address this imbalance in the tax system.”

END.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Half Empty: Fonterra's 2017 Opening Forecast Below Expectations

Fonterra Cooperative Group raised its forecast farmgate milk payout for next season by less than expected as the world's largest dairy exporter predicts lower prices will crimp production and supply will pick up. The New Zealand dollar fell. More>>

ALSO:

Pest Control: Mouse Blitz Team Leaves For Antipodes

The Million Dollar Mouse project to rid Antipodes Island of mice is underway with the departure of a rodent eradication team to the remote nature reserve and World Heritage Area. More>>

Gongs Got: Canon Media Awards & NZ Radio Awards Happen

Radio NZ: RNZ website The Wireless, which is co-funded by NZ On Air, was named best website, while Toby Manhire and Toby Morris won the best opinion general writing section for their weekly column on rnz.co.nz and Tess McClure won the best junior feature writer section. More>>

ALSO:

Pre-Budget: Debt Focus Risks Losing Opportunity To Stoke Economy

The Treasury is likely to upgrade its forecasts for economic growth in Budget 2016 next week but Finance Minister Bill English has already signalled that more of his focus is on debt repayment than on fiscal stimulus or tax cuts... More>>

ALSO:

Fulton Hogan's Heroes: Managing Director Nick Miller Resigns

Fulton Hogan managing director Nick Miller will leave the privately owned construction company after seven years in charge. The Dunedin-based company has kicked off a search for a replacement, and Miller will stay on at the helm until March next year, or until a successor has been appointed and a transition period completed. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Electricity, Executions, And Bob Dylan

The Electricity Authority has unveiled the final version of its pricing plan for electricity transmission. This will change the way transmission prices (which comprise about 10% of the average power bill) are computed, and will add hundreds of dollars a year to power bills for many ordinary consumers. More>>

ALSO:

Half Empty: Fonterra NZ, Australia Milk Collection Drops In Season

Fonterra Cooperative Group says milk collection is down in New Zealand and Australia, its two largest markets, in the first 11 months of the season during a period of weak dairy prices. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news