Hotel evacuated after Dunedin building collapse

23:34, Jan 11 2011
Collapsed building in Dunedin
FACING DEMOLITION: Part of Dunedin's CBD was cordoned off this morning when a building partially collapsed.

A Dunedin building which began collapsing early this morning is to be partially demolished, police say.

The building, on Rattray St in the central city, had part of its roof and two walls cave in overnight.

Police, fire and council inspectors had cordoned off the area and evacuated the neighbouring Crown Hotel.

Collapsed building in Dunedin
STAND BACK: Police have cordoned off part of Dunedin's CBD after a building started collapsing.

Senior Sergeant Steve Aitken said the cause of the collapse was being investigated by the Dunedin City Council. He said a cafe in the building, the Dragon, was legendary.

Other businesses in the area included a massage parlour and the Speights Ale House.

Because the building remained unstable, cordons at the scene, Rattray St is closed between Princes St and Maclaggan St, would stay in place.

Dunedin company Anchorage Properties Ltd owns the building. Its directors are Dunedin real estate agent Lincoln Darling and his partner Christine Murphy. It is understood they are meeting to discuss the demolition.

Witness Rob Wilks said the building must be more than 100 years old.

- with Stuff

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