A grand old dame of the Dunedin streetscape is being brought
back to life by a Dunedin law firm.
The historic Bank of New Zealand Building at the corner of
Rattray and Princes Sts, in the Exchange, will, come June, be
home to commercial law firm Van Aart Sycamore Lawyers, after
the company bought the building and is having it renovated.
Firm directors Michael Van Aart and Tony Sycamore said they
were looking for permanent premises and the building's
location, natural light and character had appealed.
Mr Sycamore said he expected the building would be ''a really
nice place to work''.
The location was also great. Buildings around the Exchange
area were filling up with commercial tenants, in what was
historically the commercial heart of Dunedin.
The company was strengthening the building from 67% of code
to 100%, and installing full fire sprinkler systems
throughout, as well as renovating and fitting out new
offices, while retaining the heritage features of the
building preserved by previous owner Ted Daniels, he said.
''It's quite cool for a building that didn't have a use for
such a long time.''
The work included painting the outside of the building,
securing parapets and installing a replica of an original
external door long since removed.
''Basically, we're making it relevant for another 50 years
The company's 14 staff would be based on the first floor, and
once they had moved in the firm hoped to find tenants for the
other three floors.
The bank chamber would be tidied up and left vacant in the
meantime, separated from the entrance and lifts by a glass
''It's just a neat old building. We are looking forward to
being in here.''
Mr van Aart said it was great to be involved in bringing back
to life what had been a dead corner for more than 10 years.
''It's cool to be a part of this.''
The company was working closely with the Dunedin City Council
and the New Zealand Historic Places Trust on the