Dunedin City Council
Media Release 21 Apr 2011
A Brick In Time . . .
Recent events in Dunedin and elsewhere around the country have brought heritage into the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. The collapses of parapets, discussions about dangerous buildings in the aftermath the earthquakes in Christchurch, have caused many around Dunedin to start thinking about the maintenance and strengthening of heritage buildings.
All this is timely for the Dunedin Heritage Buildings Economic Re-use Steering Group, who are working through ways of encouraging the re-use of heritage buildings in the city.
While the group will report its findings and recommendations back to Council in the next few months, it has also been releasing some initiatives during the course of its investigations.
The latest of these relates directly to the issue of building maintenance. As Steering Group chair, Lee Vandervis notes, ‘Many people aren’t sure what they are looking for when it comes to spotting problems on their buildings. There are often so many things to check, people don’t know where to start’.
Recognising this, the Steering Group has put together a building maintenance checklist to guide heritage building owners in drafting their own maintenance regimes.
Steering Group member, Cr Kate Wilson agrees, while adding ‘It’s important to catch things early. Leaving small problems, like leaks in the roof, can grow and become really big problems further down the track. This checklist is meant to help owners identify these problems and plan to fix them. It may also help identify construction or design faults in a building that might unwittingly be creating problems for the building.”
The checklist also contains helpful hints on economic ways to address some key issues. ‘Often people are surprised at how relatively small changes can save them big amounts of money down the track and help ensure their building has a future,’ says Cr Vandervis. ‘We want to help owners as much as we can now before the damage becomes irreversible’.
The building checklist will be sent to all owners of buildings scheduled in the District Plan. Copies will also be available from the Customer Services Agency and on the DCC website.
More information on the Heritage Buildings Economic Reuse Steering Group can also be found at:
Contact Glen Hazelton, DCC Policy Planner (Heritage) on 477 4000.
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr