Building Earthquake Register

Council's Earthquake-Prone, Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy ensures that buildings in Hamilton do not compromise people’s health and safety through dangerous or insanitary conditions in the event of an earthquake. 

The policy became operative in 2006 and was reviewed in 2008 and 2011. Information learnt from the Christchurch earthquake and previous events in both Christchurch and Gisborne were taken into consideration as part of the review.

Lower-risk area

Hamilton's geographical positioning means it is considered to be lower-risk and not exposed to the likelihood of a major earthquake. Buildings identified that could be at risk are spread across the city and not in one particular area like the CBD. This includes residential as well as commercial and industrial areas.

Also, our CBD does not accommodate 50,000 people like Christchurch and our building stock is a greater mix of modern with fewer older buildings. Hamilton has, for the past 30 years, implemented processes in the upgrading of older buildings. This has been a significant factor in the refit and redevelopment of at-risk buildings.

Council's policy is focused on ensuring buildings (Category 1 and 2) at greater risk are identified and a timeframe set for which they must be brought up to the level of strength identified in the Building Act 2004.

The Act requires a strength equivalent to 34 per cent of the engineering code or better. In terms of the engineering code the Act's requirement does mean that buildings, once strengthened, will perform much better in an earthquake.

Upgrading a building to meet the minimum requirements or applying a higher level of strengthening does not incur significant financial or design cost. In Hamilton local engineers and owners show a history of strengthening buildings to a higher standard in every instance.

Identifying earthquake-prone buildings​

The Register of Earthquake-Prone Buildings  identifies the addresses of Category 1 and 2 buildings, as defined in the Earthquake-Prone, Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy, in Hamilton where an engineers' report has been requested. This Register of Earthquake Prone Buildings in Hamilton is currently under review.

Category 1 and 2 buildings have a specific timeframe by which strengthening must be completed, enabling building owners to plan and fund upgrading work. All owners of Category 1 and 2 buildings are already five years into their timeframe.

Category 1 buildings are required to be upgraded by 31 March 2019 and Category 2 buildings by 31 March 2030.

A property listed as a Category 1 or 2 is also recorded on the property's Land Information Memorandum (LIM). For more specific information about any particular building we recommend you make an application for a LIM on the property.

Page reviewed: 23 Aug 2016 1:55pm