Pat Booth remembers too

The other day I blogged about the so called asbestos problem in the Civic building in Auckland being used as an excuse to buy a new ivory tower for the empire builders at Auckland Council….now Pat Booth has written about it too:

Buying as its new headquarters the ASB’s $100-plus million 31 storey office block in Albert St, reportedly four times the size of the 19 level current Civic Building overlooking Aotea Centre, is the latest suspect grand plan.

Borrowing to do so, of course.

Then there’s the added figures and facts that go with the plan.

For instance that it will house 2400 of the council staff.

With this worrying PS: “Two thousand four hundred of the council’s 6000”! Good grief, so they actually need the equivalent of two more tower blocks for that size of staff.

Question: How many people in total did it take to run the various councils before they were merged? One official explanation why the Civic Building may be demolished is that it has leak problems, is not up to code, is too small, needs a new facade. There’s even been a suggestion – not in this paper – of an asbestos problem.

Which puzzles Dame Cath Tizard who told me she remembers being evicted from her mayoral office there like everyone else for months late in the 1980s until the experts said they had got it all out.

She has a photo of herself holding the last bag.

So much for asbestos but have council workers really been housed in an environment which didn’t meet the council’s own building code. If so, would the council’s officers have allowed the same dispensation to some city corporate?

Any wonder the ratepayers who were kidnapped into the city without being asked are worried.


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  • le sphincter

    Now they are saying there are cost savings …of a few 100 grand a year over 20 years !!

    I thought Auckland Council  took on space  at the old Telecom building on K rd ?. What is wrong with staying there.
    There have just done a big refurb at Graham St where a lot of the consents  are done. What is wrong with staying there, at least the access for builders  and public  is reasonably good.

    • AnonWgtn

      100 grand over 20 years – like the tooth fairy – yea.
      In long term financial strategy its sweet FA – buy a burger in 20 years.

      • le sphincter

        Its all bullshit and they are only saying it because they have been rumbled over the asbestos claims.

        Now they are saying the  $115 mill building will be worth $150 mill with council as tenant. Let someone else  pay top dollar and see if that turns out to be true. What will the fitout costs be  ? Another  $20 mill ?

         But it only happens if they are paying market rent. And as the council is in mostly in buildings it owns and only a few renters, they will have  empty space  if they buy ANOTHER building and move heaps  of people in

        It seems its too late as media reports have said its a done deal.

        “Auckland Council has bought the ASB tower for $104 million and will move its entire central city staff there over the next two years.”

        One recent lease says there were  1152m2 on the 16th floor. Not every floor has that much, but its a starting point. For one tenant over say  40 floors would give 46,000 m2.

        Now they are saying thay want to move  all 6000 CBD employees in . That would make
        around 7.6m2 per employee. That isnt going to happen unless its japanese style shoulder to shoulder.  You have to allow passages and  meeting rooms etc. My guess is 25m2 per employee on average. This would only be 1800 staff.  Maybe 2000 ?
        Perhaps some one  with commercial office  knowledge  could give  finer details.

        So no way they will have room for all CBD staff. This seems to be bullshit as well.

  • captain kidd

    Bloody outrageous.6000 odd people doing fuck all,mostly bludgers.Of couse they will all say what a wonderfull job they are doing.Using real peoples money to simply waste on whatever takes their fancy.Fuck I hate bureaucrats,simply slowing real people down and making our lives more complicated and expensive.

  • Rockyr

    For cultural factors the Maori Department and Maori Consultancy committee will need the top floor. It will have to be fitted out with totem poles etc as befits their status.

  • FedupWithIT

    Whilst we spend 40 or more hours a week trying to put money into our pockets – they spend 20 to 30 hours a week (being paid for 40) trying to get it out of our pockets to fund some pet project they have. I used to do quite a bit of business with a few of the Old councils – and the people were actually good public servants – now in most part it’s just a jobs for mates enviroment – I don’t even bother tendering for work now – complete waste of time – Outsourced  Desktops – WTF  – thety can’t even do the easy stuff for themselves – and the winner is …. HP with the wrong tool for the wrong job at the wrong Price.

  • Tom

    Absolute Proof that you can elevate people to their height of incompetence 

  • MikeR

    Any idea’s how can we get this Ivory Tower up there useless Austerity Arse’s.