Essential works to upgrade and strengthen the Helensville War Memorial Hall and Library will get underway this month.
Located in the heart of Helensville, the building is part of a larger complex including the art centre, Kaipara Memorial RSA and Plunket.
A comprehensive work programme has been set out to address weathertightness issues, upgrade lighting and air conditioning systems and improve the seismic resilience of the complex.
The complex was assessed as being earthquake-prone following the completion of Detailed Seismic Assessments in 2021. The hall and the RSA building were deemed in need of strengthening to bring the attributable seismic risk down to an acceptable level.
Funded by Rodney Local Board and the council’s regional seismic strengthening programme, this project is one of the four seismic pilot projects that the council is undertaking to gain a better understanding of seismic retrofit projects.
The learnings from this project will help determine the best value for money for future seismic strengthening works and will identify the most effective approach for repairing earthquake-prone buildings of different design, age, complexity, and risk.
Rodney Local Board Chair Phelan Pirrie says the upgrade is essential as the work will future-proof the facility and enable it to meet the needs of the Helensville community.
“Unfortunately, this important community asset will not be available for quite some time and that will be inconvenient to all.
“We appreciate your understanding and patience during this time, as we look forward to having a safer and improved facility reopen in 2023.”
The work programme will begin from mid-September 2022 through to the end of February 2023 which will result in the partial closure of the complex at certain times:
- Helensville War Memorial Hall and meeting rooms will be closed for the duration of the works commencing 20 September through to the end of February. Council staff are working with hall hirers to relocate several bookings to other venues.
- With the Kaipara RSA expected to be closed from November to February, there will be support during the renovation.
- The art centre, library and service centre and Plunket will continue to operate but may need to close for short periods when certain works take place. The art centre’s exhibition and school holiday programmes will continue in October.
Auckland Council’s General Manager of Parks and Community Facilities Taryn Crewe says the building is due for an upgrade and these essential works will ensure it can remain fit for purpose into the future.
“The Helensville War Memorial Hall and Library offers many services and spaces that help contribute to a real sense of community.
“This work programme involves significant long-term improvements to the building to ensure our communities can continue to use it for a range of social, cultural, art and recreational activities.
“Stakeholders have been briefed on the construction timeline and will be getting regular updates on progress which includes a fortnightly project meeting with the contractor.
“We understand that these works will bring some disruption to the community and others who use this site and we thank the Helensville community for their patience as these works progress. We look forward to delivering an improved facility that will serve the community well into the future.”