News | 17 August 2021

Wellington moves into Alert Level 4 lockdown

With an Aucklander testing positive for COVID-19, Wellington is moving into Alert Level 4 lockdown at 11.59pm this evening for three days, and Wellington City Council will be closing most of its public facing facilities, with many services going online.

COVID Level 4 landscape

During Alert Level 4, guidance from the Government and Ministry of Health stipulates that Council can still provide essential services, but non-essential operations must cease for the safety of staff and the community.

Mayor Andy Foster says it’s very frustrating to be back in this position, but as a city we all need to work together to protect our people, our economy, and our more vulnerable communities.

“For Wellington City Council, Alert Level 4 means our staff and contractors will be following safety protocols to keep themselves and our community safe. This includes limiting contact with the public and providing more services online or over the phone wherever we can.

Rubbish will still be collected, but there will be changes to the recycling kerbside collections, says Waste Operations Manager, Emily Taylor-Hall.

EnviroWaste will not be collecting glass recycling while we are in Level 4. The decision has been made from a health & safety perspective to protect their workers – the Delta variant is much more transmissible from the first round, and glass recycling is predominantly bottles, many of which may carry saliva residue.  

“Whilst this may be frustrating, we can’t argue with a measure that essentially has their workers’ health and safety at heart. 

“For glass recycling collections that will be happening on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday we ask that residents do not put their glass recycling out at the kerbside, as there will be no collections for glass. We ask that residents, if they have space, hold onto their glass crates until the next glass collection in a fortnight’s time - assuming we have returned to a level that allows collection.  

“All co-mingled recycling that is in wheelie bins or recycling bags will be collected as per normal, but will be landfilled until the sorting facility in Seaview reopens. Residents should place their bins and bags at the kerbside for normal collections. We do not recommend stockpiling of co-mingled recycling for health and safety reasons.”

The Southern Landfill will be closed to the public but will be open for commercial operators who are carrying out essential services only. The Tip Shop and Recycle Centre will be closed.

Our recreation facilities, libraries, and other community venues will also be closed.

“Under Alert Level 4 people are expected to work from home where possible unless it’s essential, and to stay safe and adhere to recommended health and physical distancing protocols – and most importantly we need to be kind, compassionate and patient,” says Mayor Foster.  

“We will continue to provide updates about our services and facilities through all our channels, and remind everyone to follow guidance from the Ministry of Health and COVID-19 team.”

Work on significant construction projects including the Tākina Convention Centre, Town Hall, and the St James will also temporarily cease.

Routine or planned maintenance work will stop across the city on our roads, infrastructure and parks and reserves network, along with many smaller construction projects.

With events, activities and venues closed for safety precautions at Alert Level 4, Council encourages everyone to stay active mentally and physically for their well-being.

While we are expected to stay home unless it is essential, there are lots of online tools for everyone to access through our library services, says Libraries and Community Spaces Manager, Laurinda Thomas.

While we’re in lockdown there are some great online services you can tap into while you’re staying home – and all you need is a library card. You can learn a language, download an ebook or audiobook, stream a movie, and read newspapers and magazines from all over the globe.

"While Community Centres are closed, staff are still available digitally and over the phone, and can help residents connect in with their local support networks,” adds Laurinda.

If you don’t have a Library card, you can apply for one online here.  

Outdoor facilities closed at Alert Level 4:


Makara Peak Mountain Bike Park

Sports fields and outdoor courts

Newtown Park athletics track

Ian Galloway BMX track

Hataitai Park velodrome

Makara and Karori Cemeteries – the gates will be closed with pedestrian only access at entrances, and the cemetery office at Karori will be closed to the public. Both chapels at Karori will also be closed.

Dog parks – dogs can only be off-lead in off-leash exercise areas, and when off-lead, they must be kept under control. If you are not in one of these designated off-lead areas, your dog must be on a lead at all times.

Pools and Recreation closed at Alert Level 4:

All our pools and recreation centres

All programmes and classes

For more information about all pools and recreation centres at Alert Level 2 visit wellington.govt.nz/recreation.

Rubbish and Recycling Services:


Kerbside rubbish collections continue under Alert Level 4

Kerbside co-mingle collections continue but will be landfilled

Kerbside glass collections suspended

Para Kai kerbside food waste collections suspended

The Southern Landfill will be closed to the public but will be open for commercial operators who are carrying out essential services only

The Recycle Centre will be closed

Tip Shop will be closed for both drop-off and sales

Libraries:


All Wellington City Libraries branches will be temporarily closed

Any books due back during this time will have any fees waived, so the public is asked to please keep all items at home until the branches reopen

Library customers can access a range of online resources at wcl.govt.nz/elibrary. This includes online storytimes, ebooks, newspapers, movies, and online courses

After hours slots at our libraries will be closed, so please hold onto your books until your local branch reopens

If you have any questions please contact Wellington City Libraries by calling 801 4040 during office hours or email enquiries@wcl.govt.nz

Community Services:


Although our Community Centres are closed, the teams are still available via email and phone, and can help residents connect in with their local support networks

Newlands and Linden Community Centres will continue to run their foodbank/food distribution services, by arrangement. You’ll find the details on their individual Facebook pages

Other Council services to stop at Alert Level 4 (where physical distancing and hygiene protocols can be maintained)


Parking – metered and coupon parking will be free, but illegal parking enforcement continues

Graffiti removal

Building Consents & Resource Consents

Land Information Memorandums (LIMS)

Noise Control – limited service

Public Health – limited service

Council Committee meetings – will operate via Zoom meetings

The Service Centre on Manners Street

All Libraries and Community Centres 

Recreation centres including the ASB Sports Centre in Kilbirnie

Swimming pools and Club Active Fitness Centres

Skate parks and playgrounds

Berhampore Golf Course

The Begonia House, Tree House and Otari Visitor Centre at Wellington Botanic Gardens

Brooklyn wind turbine gate

TeKopahau/Red Rocks Gate

Public BBQ’s

Water fountains

The Carter Observatory

Toi Pōneke Arts Centre

Museum Wellington

The Cable Car and associated museum

The Wellington Zoo

The Harbourside Market will be closed on Sunday 22 August

Zealandia

Citizenship Ceremonies

Public toilets

Shared rented microbility e-scooters not allowed during Alert Level 4 & 3

Citizen Advice Bureaus closed for face to face but available for online services

Local Hosts will not be operating

Environmental Group Volunteer activities

For the most up to date information about the status of all Council facilities and services please visit the Wellington City Council website COVID-19 section wellington.govt.nz/covid-19.

All services and facilities information is being updated on our website with Alert Level 4 status, we will endeavour to have most updates in place by 11.59 this evening.