Earthquake-damaged Melrose House has been closed to the public, but the cafe and gardens remain open.
A chimney on the east side of the historic Nelson building was found to be cracked following the Seddon earthquake last month, and the area below it was cordoned off while further inspections were made.
Nelson City Council community relations adviser Nan Ward said engineers had now assessed the chimney and had deemed it a risk to people using the building.
She said the council was in talks with the trust that manages Melrose, the owner of the cafe, and the Heritage Places Trust to find a solution.
In the meantime, the council has closed the eastern side of the historic house for health and safety reasons.
The cafe and flat on the western side of Melrose House, and the gardens, remain open to the public. While the cafe's toilet is closed, a temporary portable toilet would be available, Ms Ward said.
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