What we're doing around earthquake-prone buildings (EPB) including information for building owners and visitors.
Let us know if you have a query about an earthquake-prone building
In July 2017 new rules for dealing with earthquake-prone buildings, including the main changes and building owner roles and responsibilities came into effect.
The Building (Earthquake-prone Buildings) Amendment Act 2016(external link) changed how earthquake-prone buildings are identified and dealt with under the Building Act 2004(external link).
If the Council issues an earthquake-prone building notice on a priority building in accordance with Section 133AP(external link), the owner has to complete remedial work or demolish the building within 7.5 years of the date of the original notice in accordance with Section 133AM(external link).
If the Council issues an earthquake-prone building notice in accordance with Section 133AP(external link), remedial work or demolition of the building must be completed within 15 years of the date of the notice in accordance with Section 133AM(external link).
Visit the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's managing earthquake-prone buildings.(external link)
The Council issues a section 133AP/133AR notice to require the owner of an earthquake-prone building to do work; erect a hoarding, fence or warning sign; or to take action to strengthen or demolish the building where a life safety risk is present.
The notice is issued under the Building Act 2004(external link).
If you have received a section 133AP/133AR notice from the Council indicating that your building has been assessed as earthquake-prone and you do not agree with this assessment or have completed strengthening work, please send your engineering assessment or completion documentation to DEEs@ccc.govt.nz.
One of our engineers will review the information provided. If our engineer’s review agrees with your information we will remove your building from the Earthquake-prone Building Register.
If our engineer's review disagrees with your information we will contact you to let you know that your building remains on the Earthquake-prone Building Register and the section 133AP/133AR notice will continue to apply.
A copy of any section 133AP/133AR notice issued by the Council must be attached, in a prominent position, near to the main entrance to the building and must not be removed or relocated without the Council's approval.
The building owner is committing an offence if they fail to attach the notice in accordance with section 133 AU of the Building Act 2004. If they are convicted of this offence, they are liable for a fine not exceeding $20,000.
The notice informs the public that they are entering and using a building that is earthquake-prone and that it may suffer damage in a moderate earthquake.
The Council will consider enforcement action if a notice is not displayed correctly.
Any earthquake work, either strengthening or demolition, requires the normal consenting process from the Council.
The Council can help owners with the seismic strengthening of listed heritage buildings.
The Heritage Team offers free advice(external link), including exploring options for work that balances the owners' needs for continued functional use of the building with appropriate conservation methodologies.
Some strengthening schemes have more impact on heritage fabric and values than others. Usually, there is more than one option available. Sometimes a less intrusive strengthening approach can also be less expensive. The Heritage Team has experience with what has worked well in other heritage buildings.
Strengthening works to listed heritage buildings may require Resource Consent.
Owners of heritage items listed in the District Plan are eligible to apply for funding from the Council’s Heritage Incentive Grants Fund. The Central City Landmark grants support the retention, repair and upgrade of key landmark heritage buildings within the Central City.
Grants may be available to assist with repairs, seismic upgrades and building code compliance upgrades to facilitate ongoing use and appropriate adaptive re-use. Initial contact should be made to the Heritage team on 03 941 8999.
The Council operates a case management service where dedicated case managers assist commercial customers through all Council approval processes, including consenting.
The process starts at the initial concept stage and continues with support right through to completion.
The service is used by customers of all technical capabilities so is beneficial whether you’re engaging industry professionals or are struggling with the requirements.
If you’re interested in saving time and being well prepared, check out the information on Partnership Approvals to see if your project qualifies.
Building owners need to develop their own policies and procedures. All tenants must be aware of these processes and know what to do before an event.
Anyone running a business is required by law to provide a work environment that is without identifiable risks to health and safety.
The Health and Safety at Work Act 2015(external link) does not set a minimum standard, rather it says that all practical steps are taken to remove or minimise the risk from identified hazards.
Following a significant seismic event, the Council recommends building owners/operators get any buildings assessed for potential structural damage that may have been caused by the earthquake.
The Council recommends the following four-step process to ensure your building is safe after an earthquake.
The earthquake-prone building register(external link) is part of the framework for managing earthquake-prone buildings(external link) that came into force on 1 July 2017.
The register is owned and managed by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) and enables councils and the Ministry to record and update information about buildings or parts of buildings that have been determined to be earthquake-prone.
The list will change as further buildings are identified and added, or as buildings are strengthened or demolished.
The Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy 2018 replaced the Council’s Earthquake-prone, Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy 2010.
The Council has a responsibility to ensure workers, residents and visitors to the city are protected against the risks unsafe buildings can pose.
The Building Act 2004 (section 131) requires all territorial authorities, including the Council, to adopt and review a policy on dangerous and insanitary buildings within its district. Earthquake-prone buildings are now covered by sections 133AA - 133AY of the Building Act. The Council adopted its Policy in December 2018.
The policy outlines how the Council undertakes its responsibilities under the act that relate to dangerous, affected and insanitary buildings, including how it will work with building owners to prevent buildings from remaining dangerous or insanitary, particularly where a dangerous building is affecting, or potentially affecting, another building.