FAQs – Pātai putuputu

The detailed seismic assessment of the Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre put the building in the earthquake prone category which makes it a high risk building should there be a seismic event. The safety of the public and staff is our priority. Regardless, we would not be able to work around the remedial work which is now required.

The Centre is scheduled to reopen in 2021.

The total project budget is $22.5 million and is now fully funded. Council has committed $11.5 million towards the seismic strengthening of the Centre, with the balance of $11 million secured from external funding partners.

There were seven staff based at the Sir Howard Morrison Centre who have been redeployed to the Energy Events Centre during the closure.

○  Strengthen Rotorua’s rich and diverse performing arts by providing a venue that can showcase all forms of performance, create vibrancy and optimise use of the Centre
○  Strengthen the building for earthquake stability, providing safe access for our performers, audiences and staff
○  Create a fit-for-purpose venue that encourages wide use and enables the presentation of high quality performing arts for Rotorua locals and visitors

○  Enriched creative experiences for our performers and audiences
○  Increased use of the facility by performing arts groups
○  Quality performance spaces that enable a diverse mix of shows
○  Affordable performance spaces for local organisations and smaller touring companies
○  Provide the Bay of Plenty with a venue capable of attracting and hosting larger commercial shows that the region currently misses out on
○  A variety of entertainment options for locals and visitors
○  Reflect Rotorua’s unique identity through rich arts, diverse performance and Māori culture
○  Support Vision 2030 – strong culture, easy lifestyle and diverse opportunities

No. An audit of all major public council buildings was completed some time ago. Earthquake strengthening work has already been completed on Te Aka Mauri – Rotorua Library on Haupapa Street and the iSite on Fenton Street. Rotorua Museum will remain closed until strengthening and restoration is complete.


These buildings were all identified some time ago as being an earthquake risk under legislation introduced following the Christchurch earthquakes.
Buildings deemed to be a risk require further assessment to ascertain whether they are earthquake-prone and therefore require remedial work.
Construction methodology has changed, and so has legislation in terms of required standards, which has impacted on the safety rating of many buildings around the country. As a result, a number of public Council-owned buildings have closed around New Zealand.

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