NZ Govt sitting on secret list of risky Wellington buildings

A building contractor has warned the Government to move immediately to inspect buildings on a secret list of risky structures in Wellington, compiled after the Christchurch quakes.

The contractor, who worked as a junior on some of Wellington’s big building projects in the seventies and eighties, has told Investigate that a number of city buildings were constructed using unauthorised deviations from plan, intended to cut development costs. Similar shortcuts allegedly played a role in the collapse of Canterbury’s CTV building in 2011.

The contractor says he passed to the government last year a list of Wellington buildings that could fail catastrophically in a major quake, and is disappointed nothing appears to have been done.

The round of building inspections underway as a result of yesterday’s big Wellington earthquake provides perfect cover for engineers to see how properties on the risky building list stood up to the tremors.