Engineers identify a number of problems with Lower Hutt library

The historic Petone Settlers Museum is no longer considered earthquake prone but the news is not so good for Lower Hutt's War Memorial Library.

An engineer's assessment has rated the library at 40 per cent of the new National Building Standard.

The council has no plans to close the library and is waiting for the result of geotechnical testing before deciding what strengthening work is required.

Petone's Settlers Museum was earlier this year given a rating of 15 per cent.

Anything under 34 per cent is considered earthquake prone and there was a fear that with it being built on a sand base, it would be beyond repair

After a more detailed assessment engineers have given it a 70 per cent rating and the council now says it is "unlikely"to be earthquake prone.

An engineer's report on the library, which is on ground that is likely to liquefy in a large earthquake, identified a number of potential problems with the 1956 building.

The council last upgraded the building in 2005, spending $5 million to strengthen it.

To get it to 80 per cent of code would require replacing and strengthening walls. The building is graded a C, which means there is a "medium risk" to life in an earthquake.

Some of its walls, however, represent a "life safety issue" and the roof above one of the entrances is "compromised" and at risk of collapsing in a big shake, according to engineers.

Read the full article on stuff.co.nz here


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