Earthquake-prone Buildings Legislation

Under the Building (Earthquake Prone Buildings) Amendment Act 2016, the Council must work with community to identify earthquake buildings that are high risk, and should be prioritised for remediation.

Although there are very few of those buildings left in the district following previous earthquakes, the Council has identified a small number of priority buildings in Rangiora and Kaiapoi, and will be seeking the input of residents to identify others.

Council must consult on whether buildings are priority buildings due to:

  • their location beside vehicle and/or pedestrian routes with sufficient traffic to warrant prioritisation; and
  • the potential impact of their failure in an earthquake on people.

Council has proposed areas in Rangiora and Kaiapoi which it considers have sufficient vehicle and/or pedestrian access to warrant prioritisation.

Council seeks your views on proposals for roads, footpaths and other routes that should be prioritised. Council also seeks your views on whether there are any other routes that should be included.

Background Information

To assist with understanding the Building (Earthquake-prone Buildings) Amendment Act 2016 and the requirement for consultation, we went back to why the amendment was made to the Act; and found the advocate for change, Ann Brower.

Ann is the sole survivor of a bus crushed by falling masonry in the February 2011 quake and who worked tirelessly to get changes made to policy surrounding the strengthening of buildings that have unsecured or unreinforced masonry.

At the Royal Commission of enquiry into building performance in Canterbury Ann reported ….”It is hard to avoid the conclusion that Parliament, the building owners, and the City Council had, each in their own way, left us there to die. …… It wasn’t the earthquake. It was the building, decisions made about the building, and the failure to enforce those decisions. This building, and hundreds like it, had been deemed “earthquake prone” for 30 years.”

You can read a full interview with Ann Brower here

In the Waimakariri District, we have had a proactive team including building owners, the building unit and engineers working to ensure unreinforced masonry buildings are identified and remediated. As you will see from the statement of proposal there are three areas where buildings are currently identified as ‘priority’ buildings.

This consultation is the opportunity for the community to let us know if there are any other buildings on public routes, often used by pedestrians and vehicles, to be identified as ‘priority’ buildings.

Find out more

If you have any questions or would like further information, phone 0800 965 468 or email records@wmk.govt.nz

You can submit you feedback in person at any of our service centres, email us or use the link below.

Please provide your feedback no later than
5pm, Thursday 20 September.