Bell Tea building to be strengthened

The Bell Tea building in Hope St. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
The Bell Tea building in Hope St. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
There is no more tea but still some sympathy for one of Dunedin's most recognisable industrial buildings.

The 91-year-old Bell Tea building in Hope St is in line to get the earthquake-strengthening it needs to survive, documents lodged with the Dunedin City Council show.

The building was assessed for its earthquake strength following Christchurch's 2011 quake - Bell Tea and Coffee Co's Christchurch building was destroyed in that event - and found to be below minimum standards.

The company determined the Dunedin building's required repairs would not be commercially viable and put it on the market, shifting its 10 jobs to Auckland. The building was bought later in the year by Dunedin developer Peter Gullen.

Mr Gullen filed tender and consent documents with the council last month, detailing strengthening work.

That work includes laying concrete topping slabs to all floors, building concrete block stair and lift walls, and adding precast concrete stairs.

When contacted by the Otago Daily Times, Mr Gullen said he did not want to talk about his plans for the building.

However, the ODT understands the building is likely to become apartments in the future.

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