About the Town Hall strengthening project

Wellington Town Hall is being strengthened and upgraded.

View from Civic Square of Wellington Town Hall, as it looks in 2013.

Wellington Town Hall from Civic Square


The Grade 1 listed building is more than a century old. It was closed to the public in 2013 because it was earthquake prone. By law it must be either demolished or strengthening must be underway by the end of 2019. Demolition is not an option because of its heritage status.

When it re-opens it will be a world-class musical and recording venue with improved rehearsal and performance space. It will be a base for civic and community events and part of a centre of musical excellence for New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO) and Victoria University of Wellington’s New Zealand School of Music Te Kōkī. 

The estimated costs of the work is $112.4 million plus a contingency allowance.

Current status

Construction work on the strengthening of the Town Hall started in April 2019 after Naylor Love was appointed as the main construction contractor.

The plan of work

Crane installation

On 17 and 18 September 2020 we installed a crane in the centre of the Town Hall.

The crane will be in place until early 2022 to help carry out parts of the strengthening work.

Due to the height of the crane, we removed part of the roof, which will be covered and repaired once the crane is removed.

Changes to road layout outside the Town Hall, Wakefield Street

We changed the road layout in Wakefield Street outside the Town Hall, so construction vehicles can enter and leave the site safely – with minimum disruption to other road users and pedestrians.

The angled parking spaces outside the row of shops and businesses opposite the Town Hall were changed to parallel parks. This allows enough space for traffic to continue flowing in both directions, while allowing construction vehicles to move around safely.

This change means there are eight fewer on-street parking spaces in the street currently. This includes two mobility car parks. The nearest alternative mobility parking spaces are in Lower Cuba Street and Harris Street.

The drawing below shows the revised street layout. The green area is the space behind the timber hoarding (marked yellow) where construction vehicles enter and leave the Town Hall construction site. The parallel parking spaces (in the lane furthest to the left) allow enough space for two-way traffic (in the middle two lanes).

If you have questions or comments, please contact us at townhallproject@wcc.govt.nz

Proposed traffic layout diagram for Wakefield Street.

Updated road layout for Wakefield Street.

Alternative venues while the Town Hall is closed

For information about alternative venues while the Town Hall is being upgraded, phone our Contact Centre on 04 499 4444.

Need help?

Build Wellington is the team responsible for carrying out this work.

Bede Crestani
Project Manager, Build Wellington
Phone: 04 499 4444
Email: townhallproject@wcc.govt.nz