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St Martin's / Opawa Toy Library to close

Friday 10 August 2012
St Martin's / Opawa Toy Library to close

Christchurch City Council is today (Friday 10 August) closing the St Martin's / Opawa Toy Library building until further notice.

Engineers are currently carrying out a qualitative Detailed Engineering Evaluation (DEE) of the building and have advised that their investigations to date show that the building contains unreinforced brickwork that supports part of the structure. This could cause the building to fail in the event of another earthquake or aftershock. Engineers' initial estimates are that it has a seismic capacity of around eight percent of the New Building Standard (NBS). The Council has therefore decided to close the building before receiving the final DEE assessment report, based on engineers' recommendations that it should do so.

General Manager Community Services Michael Aitken says toy library volunteers were earlier advised that the DEE assessment was underway and that closure was a possible outcome.

"We have now received a clear direction from engineers which means that we must close the building immediately. We understand that the toy library's closure is a great loss for the local community but we must ensure that those running and using the service are not put at risk in the event of future earthquakes."

Level Two Rapid Assessments have been carried out on the building following major earthquake events. A Level Two Rapid Assessment is a visual assessment of the inside and outside of a building by an engineer.

The Council is currently carrying out DEE assessments on its 1600 buildings as part of its Facilities Rebuild Plan. For more information, visit www.ccc.govt.nz/facilitiesrebuild.

- ENDS -

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