Edgar Centre arena to be closed over summer

The MoreFM Arena at Dunedin's Edgar Centre is to be closed this summer while earthquake-strengthening work is carried out, the Dunedin City Council has confirmed.

Council property services group manager David Bainbridge, in a statement yesterday, said the structural strengthening work would begin in November and take about four months.

Three courts would be ''out of action'' while the work was carried out, and the arena would be closed, he said.

''The timing has been chosen as this is the quietest time of the year for arena bookings.''

The work would involve installing steel bracing to strengthen the building, while floors were protected by a temporary covering.

The upgrade followed revelations last year the Edgar Centre complex - used by 650,000 people a year - was significantly earthquake-prone, at between 10%-15% of the new building standard (NBS).

The complex was also being affected by subsidence, warping floors and creating leaks and other weather-tightness issues.

The $2million upgrade aimed to lift the building above 34% of NBS, meaning it would no longer be considered earthquake-prone.

Work on the complex's Woolstore building and amenities area was already under way and expected to be completed by mid-June, Mr Bainbridge said.

Costs remained within the $2million budget, he said.

''The project has gone well so far and we appreciate people's patience with the disruption.''

chris.morris@odt.co.nz

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