20 Mar 2014

Call to overhaul NZ building standards

8:38 am on 20 March 2014

The forest and wood processing industry is calling for an overhaul of the country's building standards.

The framing and timber studs of a newly constructed house in Albany.

The framing and timber studs of a newly constructed house in Albany. Photo: PHOTO NZ

The chairman of industry umbrella body the Wood Council says it's one of the ways the Government can help the sector which has a target of doubling its potential export earnings to $12 billion by 2022.

Bill McCallum says a review of the building standards and codes is well over due.

"I understand that there are about 600 building standards in New Zealand today, each of which is over seven years old and most of which are obsolete."

Mr McCallum says the complicated system of building standards in New Zealand is acting as an impediment to the use of timber products, particularly sophisticated, high-value engineered timber that is well suited for pre-fabrication systems that will lower building costs.

He says these standards and codes need to be reviewed and rationalised and a system implemented to ensure they remain current and easy to use.