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Earthquake-prone building register now online

Wednesday, November 9, 2016   Posted in: Earthquake By: Administrator With tags: earthquake recovery, rebuild, built environment

Christchurch City Council Newsline: 8th November 2016

Old Canterbury Provincial Chambers.A new register that lists the known earthquake-prone buildings in Christchurch will allow members of the public to search the status of buildings.

The register lists over 900 buildings that have been found to be earthquake-prone following engineering reviews after the February 2011 earthquake.

Christchurch City Council Head of Operational Policy and Quality Improvement Robert Wright said the register was developed as a result of an amendment to the Building Act that required Council’s to produce a list of earthquake-prone buildings over the next three years.

“This list will be regularly updated as new buildings come to light, and a new interactive search function will allow members of the public who might be concerned about a building to easily search the address and check the register,” Mr Wright said.

Buildings would be added or removed as new information was provided to the Council, including when strengthening work has been completed.

"The register allows people to search a particular address, or even just a street and identify any earthquake-prone buildings. We believe it is vital for the public to have access to this information so they are aware of buildings within our city that require strengthening work.”

A building is considered ‘earthquake-prone’ if it fails to meet at least 34 percent of the current New Building Standard (NBS) and if it were to collapse would cause injury or death, or damage to any other property in the event of a moderate earthquake. Current legislation allows for buildings to be used during the timeframe owners are given to repair and strengthen their buildings.

“A lot of these buildings are occupied and being used for residential or business purposes, and this register gives the public the opportunity to access up to date information on the buildings they use.”

The release of the register comes ahead of the introduction of new rules for dealing with earthquake-prone buildings. A change in the Building Act next year will require building owners to display signage if their building is deemed earthquake-prone. The timeframes for strengthening these buildings will also drop significantly to a maximum of 15 years.

“By establishing this register, the Council is looking to front-foot the changes and is writing to all building owners on the register to remind them of the rule change, their obligations under the changes to the Act and how Council can help them,” Mr Wright said.

Access the register and find out more on earthquake-prone buildings.