24 Nov 2014

Harcourts building to be restored

12:59 pm on 24 November 2014

Property developer Mark Dunajtschik has abandoned his bid to demolish the historic Harcourts building in Wellington, he says.

Owner Mark Dunajtschik in front of the Harcourts Building.

Owner Mark Dunajtschik in front of the Harcourts Building. Photo: RNZ

Mr Dunajtschik said he was bowing to the decision of the Environment Court which ruled the 85-year-old category 1 heritage building was a crucial element of the Lambton Quay landscape.

He says he is disappointed that the court, which does not have to carry the financial burden of restoration, can tell property owners what to do.

Heritage advocate Glen Hooker will head the company that will refurbish and strengthen the building.

Mr Dunajtschik said he is in for the long term as the value is in the land, not the building, and has budgeted $10 million for the work.

Heritage New Zealand chief executive Bruce Chapman said he was pleased the building would be repaired, and his organisation would continue to offer support and advice to category 1 building owners.

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