Verandahs that extend over a public place
Verandahs give shelter and protection from Wellington’s weather and add to our city’s character and attractiveness.
Check and maintain your verandah
Your verandah should be weathertight, well-maintained and safe. Regular maintenance is cheaper overall than one-off large repairs.
Check your verandah for:
- dirt and debris (eg pigeon droppings, which can cause a health hazard)
- materials or elements that have holes in them or are rotten
- surfaces that need repainting
- broken gutters and downpipes
- loose, visible or exposed electrical wires
- projections or other features that pose a danger to anyone using a public place, eg redundant security or light fittings.
The legal stuff
Proposed verandas bylaw
We are proposing a new verandahs bylaw in Wellington to help:
- keep street-front verandahs safe, especially in a storm or earthquake
- protect pedestrians from the weather
- maintain public verandahs in good repair.
For more information, see: Structures in Public Places - Verandahs Bylaw
Building owners are obliged to protect public verandahs
The Council legally owns the roads and airspace above the road corridor in Wellington. We have the authority under the Local Government Act 1974 to serve notice requiring an owner to alter a verandah that extends over legal road to “enable or accommodate the safe conduct of another activity in the public place”. If there is a problem, we ask that it is rectified by altering, removing and/or replacing the verandah.
Definition of legal road
Legal road is defined in section 315 of the Local Government Act 1974. In summary, it’s the formed space, including the airspace Council controls, between private property boundaries. It’s used for vehicle and pedestrian traffic, and other public activities.
Examples of problems that need fixing
Some examples where we might ask for work to be done are:
- an ongoing problem with damage to the verandah from vehicles
- a verandah over a public walkway is posing a risk to walkway users because it’s not maintained or has inadequate lighting after dark
- structural elements, including linings and roof, are in poor condition, eg rust or timber decay
- leaks from the veranda or gutters.
How we can help
Heritage-listed buildings / areas
To check if your building falls into a heritage category, see: Heritage List: Areas, Buildings, Objects, Trees and Māori Sites (684KB PDF)
If your building is a heritage-listed building or in a heritage-listed area in the District Plan, contact us to discuss your options.
You may not need resource consent to repair and maintain your verandah. However, you will need resource consent if you plan to remove or replace it.
We may be able to contribute towards the necessary work through the Built Heritage Incentive Fund. If you would like to discuss your options, email our heritage team at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone (04) 499 4444.