The Tuatara proves why it has lasted for 200 million years! In this instance, we are not talking about the lizard but an Air3 Pod located on Level 8 at NZ Post House in Wellington. Europlan worked with NZ Post on a project for a flexible meeting room option and the Air3 Pod ticked all the necessary boxes they required for a meeting room space.
We delivered and installed the Air 25 in August 2016 and NZ Post titled the Air3 Pod as the Tuatara. In the magnitude 7.8 Kaikoura earthquake that took place on the 14th of November 2016, this Tuatara stood its ground remarkably.
Collaborate, Focus, Meeting
Project lead - Tim Elliott
Post Quake Management
Though NZ Post House was declared structurally sound after the quake, it experienced a significant shake up. What wasn’t tied up or down ended up on the floor. Planter Boxes and Tambour storage fell or tipped over, unlocked lockers and storage had their contents emptied out onto the floor. There was a huge amount of mess to clean up.
The stairwell was shut by the landlord as paint had chipped off the walls and it was found to contain asbestos. Staff relocated to the ground floor café Kanteen, and this social space became a temporary workplace for NZ Post personnel while the stairwell work was completed.
How did the Air3 Pod cope?
Once access to NZ Post House was granted, we were able to go and assess how the Air3 Pod had handled the seismic event. While all around it, noteworthy chaos had taken place, the Air3 Pod had barely moved proving itself to have some serious structural integrity.
Despite the magnitude of the event, the only change to the Pod was some nominal movement of the door seals and they were straightforward to realign.
This meant the Air3 Pod was available immediately for use once everyone moved back onto the floors.
While it’s not something we’d like to experience again, it’s been of huge value to us to witness how the Air3 Pod has performed during an earthquake. It highlights that the design of the structure and the seismic kit are a successful combination.
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University of Otago - ISB
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