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Concerns over the fate of a Wellington landmark

Jul 26th, 2013 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

Old Government Building2


THE FATE of a Wellington landmark is uncertain  as the Old Government Buildings, part of Victoria University’s Pipitea campus, remain closed after Sunday’s earthquake.

Built in 1876, the large wooden buildings housed New Zealand’s civil service for 114 years and became a symbol of nationhood.

Law students studying in the important heritage site have had their classes disrupted for a third day as earthquake damage  continues to be assessed.

Rachel Zakaria, a campus receptionist said yesterday that  the extent of the damage was unknown, but the plan was for students to return  on Monday.  If this changed, students would be notified by email.

Most buildings in  the CBD have reopened, and the longer the Old Government Buildings remain closed, there is concern  over the extent of damage to the Historic Places Trust Category 1 building.

Aynsley-head-shotAynsley Wood (21), right, was one of a handful of students in the law library when the 6.5 earthquake hit. “We had a few quakes throughout the day, so when it started, I ignored it, but then it got much more intense.

“When books started falling down, I thought I should jump under my desk. There were students on the other side of the room. I couldn’t see them but I heard them screaming out.

“As soon as the worst part of the shaking had subsided, I grabbed all my stuff and just sprinted down the flights of stairs. I was worried as it’s quite an old building.”



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is a journalist studying at Whitireia. Previously he attended Otago University where he got a BA in Communications and Philosophy.
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