Earthquake-prone Buildings Policy

Consultation for the Earthquake-prone Buildings Policy closes on Monday 24 September, 5pm.

Following Government changes to the Building Act (earthquake prone buildings) the South Taranaki District Council (STDC) is seeking public feedback on proposals for identifying Hawera, Eltham and Opunake town centres as priority areas where timeframes for strengthening earthquake prone buildings would be halved.

Under the new guidelines South Taranaki has been categorised as a medium seismic risk area. This means the Council must identify potential earthquake-prone buildings within 10 years, and building owners must strengthen or demolish earthquake-prone buildings within 25 years. However, “priority buildings”, must be identified and remediated in half that time.

“Priority buildings” are those unreinforced masonry buildings (with hazards such as parapets or verandas), located in areas which have sufficient vehicle and pedestrian traffic, which would either pose a high risk to life, or are critical to emergency recovery, if they fell during an earthquake.

The Council has proposed that commercially zoned areas in Hawera (Town Centre), Eltham and Opunake (Mixed Use), as identified in the District Planning Maps (click on the links or see the Statement of Proposal below), be used as the basis for determining priority buildings.

Council considers these areas have sufficiently high pedestrian and vehicular traffic to warrant the ‘priority building’ classification, because this is where the highest numbers of people go to shop and do business.

As part of the consultation the Council is also seeking views on whether there are any emergency routes which should be prioritised.

The Council has spoken with the New Zealand Transport Agency, all the emergency services and the Taranaki District Health Board and we have not identified any routes that would be impeded by a building collapse, which didn’t already have an alternative access option.

More detailed information about the Earthquake-prone Priority Buildings and Routes of Strategic Importance proposal can be found below or at any LibraryPlus or the Hawera Administration Building.

Consultation closes at 5pm on Monday, 24 September 2018.

Public Meetings

VenueDate and TimeHosted by
Milan Restaurant, High Street, Hawera Tuesday, 11 September 2018 at 5:30 pmBizLink Hawera
Touchpoint, High Street,


Wednesday, 12 September 2018 at 5:30 pmEltham Business and Professional Association
Coastal Care, Napier Street,


Wednesday, 19 September 2018 at 5:30 pmOpunakeBusiness Association