24 Nov 2016

Wellington's largest office building evacuated

From Morning Report, 7:10 am on 24 November 2016
The Asteron Centre on Featherston Street in Wellington.

The Asteron Centre on Featherston Street in Wellington suffered damage after last week's earthquake. Photo: RNZ / Emile Donovan

Wellington's largest office building has been evacuated after an engineers report found earthquake-damaged stairwells could be unusable in a major aftershock.

The 15-floor Asteron Centre on Featherston Street is opposite the railway station.

It is just six years old, and is home to 2,700 workers, including 500 Inland Revenue staff.

Staff ringng in for updates have heard this recorded message:

"We have closed the Asteron Centre as a precaution while we carry out further safety checks. Engineers have concerns about some damage to the stairs that might mean if there's another significant earthquake we have no safe way of evacuating the building."

It joins a growing list of buildings in Wellington requiring repairs after last week's major earthquake.

The building was designed by Warren and Mahoney and built by Fletchers.