‘Stuff’ – 30 January 2018
The $90 million project to earthquake-strengthen Wellington’s Town Hall is one step closer to getting underway.
A resource consent application was lodged by Wellington City Council on Tuesday, along with illustrations of the planned music hub, to be run in conjunction with Victoria University and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.
The council announced in March last year that it planned to restore the 113-year-old venue and reopen it by June 2021.
A resource consent application, with artists’ impressions, has been lodged as a next step to starting the $90m earthquake strengthening work on Wellington’s Town Hall.
The plan includes bringing it up to 100 per cent of building code through re-piling and “base isolation”, which will see the building rest on flexible pads to lessen shaking during an earthquake.
The town hall, was declared earthquake-prone in 2009. It was shut in November 2013 for strengthening, but work halted three months later when the cost ballooned from $43m to $60m.
The Town Hall was shut in November 2013 for strengthening. But work halted three months later when the cost ballooned from $43m to $60m.
The restoration project aims to retain the building’s acoustics, considered to be among the best in the world, for the joint music hub.
Plans were also laid for the university to buy the neighbouring council-owned Municipal Office Building (MOB), which was earmarked for teaching and administrative space for the hub.
However, earthquake concerns have seen the university stall those plans.
Wellington Mayor Justin Lester said the lodging of the consent application was another exciting milestone for the project.
“Once it’s strengthened and refurbished, the Town Hall will be a central point for civic functions and will also play an active part in Wellington’s cultural life as the home of the New Zealand Centre for Music Excellence,” he said in a statement.
The strengthening work is scheduled to start in late 2018, with completion scheduled for 2021.