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Council proactively investigating ACP cladding

Council identifies 90 buildings that use types of ACP

Published: 27 June 2017

Following the Victorian State enquiry into the Lacrosse Apartments fire in Melbourne, Auckland Council has worked to identify buildings around the region that use aluminium composite panels in their construction.

The council has carried out a survey and documentation review; we identified a number of buildings around the Auckland region that interested us, and have found less than 100 that use ACP panels. We have identified 90 buildings to date and reviewed 21 of them.

This is across a range of building types, and in some cases it is used as a small design feature, rather than cladding an entire building. This work is still ongoing.

“To date we have found no evidence of inappropriate use of these products. The events in London will continue to inform our work,” says Ian McCormick, GM Building Control.

New Zealand’s fire safety regulations for buildings are amongst the most robust in the world, and Auckland Council is confident that buildings using ACP panels in Auckland are safe.

“What’s important is how they are integrated into the overall construction of the structure, including how they are fitted and the fire safety systems that lie behind them,” says Mr McCormick.

Buildings over 25 metres

The council has found two privately owned buildings that are going through a cladding remediation process that currently have PE type (non-fire rated) cladding systems over 25 metres.

Auckland Council has contacted the bodies corporates of The Nautilus and The Spencer on Byron to advise that the cladding currently installed on the buildings is the PE type.

Both buildings are in the process of being reclad with fire-rated cladding systems, following issues with weather-tightness.

The recladding is not because of concerns over the buildings’ fire safety, and the bodies corporates were previously aware of the cladding types currently on the buildings.

Construction is already underway at The Nautilus, and the building consent is currently being processed for work at The Spencer on Byron.

We are working with the project managers to make sure that appropriate safety measures are in place during the re-clad of these buildings.

The buildings have existing systems that will alert occupants to a fire, as well as internal and external sprinkler systems and protected safe routes for evacuation.

135 Albert Street

Auckland Council’s Albert Street building is currently being reclad, and ACP panels have been selected for part of the project.

“The Alucobond Plus ACP panels that are being fitted to 135 Albert Street have a high fire rating, are up to spec with the New Zealand Building Code and have been through rigorous testing,” says GM Corporate Finance and Property, Kevin Ramsay.

"Unlike lower quality products which contain a high percentage of combustible core materials, Alucobond PLUS is a superior product chosen for its high mineral content fire retardant core material."

Installation of the panels began in the last few weeks on the uppermost levels, and once completed will cover just over a quarter of the building.

The council and its contractors follow the requirements of the New Zealand Building Code when selecting which products to use in any construction project.

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