Health and Safety

Earthquake prone buildings review brought forward

6 June 2024

3 minutes to read

A review of the earthquake-prone building system to identify improvements in the way Aotearoa/New Zealand manages seismic risk in existing buildings has been brought forward.

The review will now commence this year and will focus on how well the current system is managing seismic risk in existing buildings, look to identify barriers to remediation of earthquake-prone buildings, and examine the approach taken by other overseas jurisdictions in regions of high seismic risk.

While the full scope and terms of reference are still in development, according to the Government, it is expected that the review’s outcomes will include ensuring a regulatory approach that appropriately balances reducing life safety risk in an earthquake and the impact on building owners.  

Extensions will apply automatically, and councils will reissue earthquake-prone building notices to all eligible buildings once the amendments to the Act are made (expected by end of 2024). This will help keep implementation costs low and provide clarity and certainty to owners and councils. While the review may identify further areas for legislative change, all other requirements for earthquake-prone buildings under the Act remain in place for now.  

While the review is underway, the Government intends to amend the Building Act 2004 to extend all non-lapsed earthquake-prone building remediation deadlines, as of 2 April 2024, by four years, with an option to extend by a further two years if required.  

More information about the review and extension to remediation deadlines will be made available over the coming months.  

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