Multibillion-dollar surprise for proprietors of heritage sites: lawyers   4 Mar 2013

Some of New Zealand's historic buildings are about to be hit by a multibillion-dollar bombshell, as the Government forces their strengthening, experts claim.

Marcus Beveridge and Tina Hwang, specialist property lawyers at Queen City Law, say the cost of upgrading around 15,000 to 25,000 heritage structures has been put as high as $100 billion, well exceeding the leaky-buildings crisis.

But Building and Construction Minister Maurice Williamson said charges would be nowhere near the $100 billion mark.

Officials had estimated $1.7 billion under the new proposals, he said, and opponents were suggesting extreme action. That wouldn't be necessary, and not every building would need work, due to exclusions including houses, wool sheds, barns, little-used community halls and perhaps rural churches.

Mr Beveridge and Ms Hwang, who represent many investors and developers, said seismic upgrade of earthquake-prone buildings could cost landlords six times as much as the mid-range estimate for leaky homes.

"The leaky-building saga is estimated to be worth $15 billion and there've been contrary voices on how much the seismic issue is worth," they said. Rotten homes could be fixed in a piecemeal fashion, but weak, dangerous old buildings were much harder to upgrade.

"Leaky buildings had the option of targeted repairs in addition to a full repair. Will a full repair here be required? Would it be economically sustainable? There will be a greater debate over the economics," the lawyers said.

Many tenants were deserting buildings because they were classed as dangerous and insurers were rejecting cover for landlords and tenants.

Chris Darby, Devonport-Takapuna Local Board chairman and Devonport Business Association member, is worried about buildings in his area, saying the ramifications could be far-reaching and tenants were already demanding information.

"Current and potential tenants are increasingly asking agents and landlords about the structural integrity of historic buildings.

"There is cause for concern where the perception is that historic buildings per se are not worth the risk or trouble of buying or leasing."

By Anne Gibson

Source NZ Herald

Add a comment

Bookmark and Share

News

ANZAC 2015 in pictures

25 Apr 2015 News
NZ News UK attended several ANZAC ceremonies in Auckland today. These photos were taken at the Northcote Community where the... more

ANZAC 2015: Anzac Messages, NZ Prime Minster and Governor-General

24 Apr 2015 News
Anzac Day 'We will remember them'   Anzac Day 2015 – Message from the Governor-General of New Zealand On 25 April every... more

Business

Mercer's CEO Shepherd, CFO Blathwayt quit the manufacturer

24 Apr 2015 Business News
Article - BusinessDesk   Mercer's CEO Shepherd, CFO Blathwayt quit the manufacturer By Suze Metherell April 24 (BusinessDesk) -... more

Oracle-owned boatbuilder has had two government grants

23 Apr 2015 Business News By Fiona Rotherham
  Oracle-owned boatbuilder has had two government grants in three years April 23 (BusinessDesk) - Core Builders Composites,... more

Living

Britain remembers the ANZACs - 100 years on

25 Apr 2015 ANZAC By Charlotte Everett
100 years after allied forces landed in Gallipoli, 25 April – ANZAC Day – has been commemorated in the UK officially for... more

A Kiwi's guide to ANZAC in Europe - our list of events across the UK, Ireland and beyond

24 Apr 2015 ANZAC By Charlotte Everett
Tomorrow marks the 100th ANZAC Day, and if you are a Kiwi or Aussie far from home there are plenty of events on to enable you both to... more

Property

New process for red zone Crown offers

21 Apr 2015 Property
Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee has announced a process to give everyone a say on the Crown offers to... more

NZ house prices rise 8% in March, led by 13% Auckland jump

14 Apr 2015 Property By Tina Morrison
April 14 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand residential property prices rose in March, led by Auckland where housing supply isn't meeting... more

Migration

NZ migration hits new annual record in March

23 Apr 2015 Migration By Tina Morrison
April 23 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand migration hit a new annual record in March, as more students arrived from India and China and... more

PM plays down claim war criminals are living in NZ

2 Mar 2015 Migration
Prime Minister John Key says he is not aware of any suspected war criminals from the former Yugoslavia in New Zealand. The claim that... more

Travel

Air NZ's Houston link paves way for United Airlines tie-up

17 Apr 2015 Travel & Tourism By Fiona Rotherham
  Air NZ's Houston service paves the way for partnership with United Airlines, analysts say April 17 (BusinessDesk) - Air New... more

Wellington Airport revised fees 'just within' OK range

17 Apr 2015 Travel & Tourism By Tina Morrison
  Wellington Airport's revised fees are 'just within' acceptable range of returns, regulator says April 17 (BusinessDesk) -... more

Sport

Price and Wesko Nail the Dressage at Kentucky

25 Apr 2015 Equestrian
Kiwi eventer Tim Price and Wesko have delivered their best-ever dressage score to sit at the front of the field this morning at the... more

ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres

25 Apr 2015 Sailing
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres: Burling and Tuke still lead, one more day of fleet racing At the end of day three at ISAF Sailing ... more

Columns

Gordon Campbell on the hair-pulling finale and Gallipoli

24 Apr 2015 Column
  Gordon Campbell on the hair-pulling finale, and the real hero of Gallipoli Don’t know about you, but when hi-jinks and... more

Gordon Campbell on UE pass rates & university dropout rates

14 Apr 2015 Opinion
Houston, there is clearly a problem with (a) the plunge in pass rates for University Entrance qualifications, which has been ... more

Kiwi Success

Fonterra reshuffles management team

24 Apr 2015 Appointments By Fiona Rotherham
  Fonterra reshuffles management team to speed up value-add strategy April 24 (BusinessDesk) - Fonterra Cooperative Group, the... more

TVNZ and RNZ appointments announced

23 Apr 2015 Appointments
New Zealand Government TVNZ and RNZ appointments announced Broadcasting Minister Amy Adams today announced the appointment of Sussan... more

Recruitment

Apprenticeship scheme launched

18 Apr 2015 Recruitment
The He Toki ki te Mahi Apprenticeship Training Trust was launched by Prime Minister, the Rt Hon John Key at Rehua Marae in ... more

Chinese rail workers must be paid minimum wage

17 Apr 2015 Recruitment
KiwiRail must immediately stop further Chinese engineers from working here until they can guarantee they are being paid the New... more