House in danger of collapse: pedestrians asked to avoid walkway

12 June 2017

The risk that a dilapidated and earthquake-damaged house in Mt Cook, Wellington, may collapse in strong winds or a moderate quake has forced Wellington City Council to temporarily close a popular walkway over the weekend.

The alleyway, adjacent to the house at 82 Wallace Street, connects Wallace Street to Wright Street and is used by pedestrians to get to a popular bus stop and a local dairy.

Chris Scott, the City Council’s acting Building Compliance and Consents Manager, says engineers inspected the house last week and immediately sought the assistance of the Council to block the walkway when it became obvious the building was a danger.

Temporary barrier fencing was erected at each end of the walkway last Friday but pedestrians have been shifting the fencing to take the shortcut.

Mr Scott is asking pedestrians to take heed of the barriers and to recognise that the old house poses a real danger.

“The new owners of the property want to start demolishing the house as quickly as possible – and the intention is that the demolition work should finish towards the end of next week.

“When the demolition starts the walkway will, of necessity, become part of the demolition site so it’ll be impassable. In the meantime we’re asking pedestrians to exercise patience and avoid the route.”