Making the City Resilient

25 June 2012

Making our city more resilient is a big priority for the Council, and will continue to be a focus during the next decade.

We're constructing a stronger replacement reservoir at Messines Road

We're constructing a stronger replacement reservoir at Messines Road

"Over the past 15 years, we've been working on a variety of projects to improve our city's ability to respond to, and recover from, an earthquake," says Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.

"This issue has been a major priority for the Council in this triennium, and we've stepped up the pace to make sure our city is more resilient and we'll continue to invest significant funding in strengthening our infrastructure over the next decade."

Ngaio Gorge Road, an important alternative route out of the city, has already been earthquake strengthened. Strengthening work is under way on the Karori tunnel, and will be completed this year. Future work is planned for Churchill Drive, Aotea Quay bridge, the Hataitai bus tunnel and Seatoun and Northland tunnels.

We've also built new retaining walls that are designed to withstand earthquakes at locations throughout the city, and we will continue this work.

We're also protecting our water network. For some years we have been upgrading older pipes with new ones made from flexible material.

In July, we'll begin replacing older water, stormwater and wastewater mains underneath Tasman Street with larger, more resilient pipes. The water pipes will connect to a new central city water reservoir, which is planned for Prince of Wales Park. The reservoir will service the central city and provide an emergency water supply to Wellington Hospital.

Over 90 percent of the city's water supply is now stored in reservoirs with automatic shut-off valves.

Over 70 percent of the 4500 commercial buildings in the city have had an initial safety assessment. We now have a better understanding of the strength of Wellington's buildings, with 287 being identified as earthquake prone.

By mid-2015, all of the commercial buildings in the city built prior to 1976 will have been assessed.