News | 11 February 2022
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Applications open for Built Heritage Incentive Fund

The last round of the Built Heritage Incentive Fund (BHIF) is now open. And a new fund is on its way.

A grand old three-storey art deco building standing on a corner of two main roads intersecting, with an intricate grey and white paint job, and a blue sky behind at dusk.

The BHIF is an opportunity for heritage building owners in Wellington to receive assistance to undertake seismic strengthening and heritage conservation work.

Funding is directed towards projects commencing after May 2022, where successful outcomes would be unlikely without assistance.

Applications close on Thursday 24 March.

For more information, please visit, email or call 04 499 4444.

A new fund is on the way

The new Heritage Resilience and Regeneration Fund will replace the BHIF.

While the publicly contestable funding model of the BHIF has helped a lot of heritage building owners over the years, Council officers identified an opportunity to better target funding to assist owners of earthquake prone heritage buildings that are struggling to meet the strengthening deadlines, and to direct funding to areas of urban regeneration in the city.

This fund will be managed by a heritage advisor who will work with owners to identify opportunities and navigate regulatory and technical barriers to their projects. 

Owners of Wellington’s earthquake prone heritage buildings will face considerable financial difficulties in meeting statutory strengthening deadlines over the next six years.

In December 2021, of the 137 earthquake prone heritage buildings, 104 required strengthening by the end of 2027.

Council’s support, through targeted financial and other mechanisms, can assist these owners and accelerate strengthening of Wellington’s earthquake prone heritage buildings.

Grants Subcommittee Chair, Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons, says Wellington City is considered a high-risk seismic area with a number of active fault lines, and heritage building owners need wide-spread support to get them off the earthquake prone list.

“Modelling shows there is a high likelihood of a significant earthquake hitting the capital within the next 50 years, and we want to make sure our city is as resilient as it can be before that happens.

“Heritage buildings are a priority as they’re vulnerable to seismic activity, and are so valuable in shaping the character of Pōneke – which benefits locals, visitors, businesses, tourism and the economy.”

More information on the Heritage Resilience and Regeneration Fund will be available after June 2022.