10 Dec 2012

Heritage building owner wants to demolish

7:12 pm on 10 December 2012

The owner of a central Wellington heritage building in need of millions of dollars of earthquake strengthening work says any attempts to fix it would be unsafe and totally uneconomic.

The fate of the 1926 Harcourts building on Lambton Quay is being determined at a resource consent hearing for its demolition.

The building meets just 17% of the building standard and needs $10.5 million worth of work.

Its owner Mark Dunajtschik wants to knock it down and replace it with a brand new building, but that has been met by opposition from the Historic Places Trust.

Mr Dunajtschik says the building's status as an earthquake risk has made it difficult to attract tenants and only one of the seven office floors is fully occupied.