Hutt City Council headquarters could be demolished

PAUL EASTON
Last updated 17:20 07/12/2012
Hutt City Council

More than 220 people work in the council's Laings Rd administration building, which was built in 1957.

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The Hutt City Council's own headquarters may be demolished as part of plans to redevelop its earthquake-prone civic administration centre.

The council will meet on Tuesday to decide between two options for the $22 million project.

"The first option retains most of the significant heritage features of the existing council building with redevelopment of the interior," Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace said.

"The second option involves complete demolition of the current buildings and construction of a new building east of the existing site."

The council has budgeted $22 million in the current Long Term Plan for the earthquake strengthening project.

"The detailed evaluation was against criteria which included public and staff safety, heritage issues and costs. We have gone to great lengths to ensure every aspect of this project was examined thoroughly, Mr Wallace said.

"Possible changes to local authority governance arrangements were also taken into consideration in developing multi-purpose options."

More than 220 people work in the council's Laings Rd administration building, which was built in 1957.

It has been deemed an earthquake risk for years.

Last year concerned council staffed apprised council chief executive Tony Stallinger with their concerns over working in the administration building.

Lower Hutt's Town Hall was closed in October, after engineers found parts of its walls were not reinforced, and could collapse during an earthquake.

Design work on the new structure would begin immediately following the council decision with a start on construction planned for early 2014.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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