The Viaduct Events Centre is now open!

The exciting new addition to the Auckland waterfront is now open! The glass Viaduct Events Centre has featured prominently in New Zealand Fashion Week, The International Boat Show as well as the Rugby World Cup celebrations. Read more

Q for Auckland

Q Theatre opened this weekend with a special ‘open’ day for Aucklanders to come and see the newest addition to the theatre scene in Auckland. The new performance art space is located next to Auckland Town Hall.

The project consisted of a refurbishment and a new build theatre that can accommodate up to 450 theatre-goers. It has taken some time to complete, but the results are worth it. From the new precast concrete cladding to the lovely interior which combines new elements with as much of the historical elements as possible, it is a great example of how a refurbishment ought to look.

Answers to critical questions about buildings

earthquake-analysis-22Feb-ChristchurchToday a fact sheet on the Canterbury Earthquakes was released by a cadre of scientific and technical organisations in New Zealand. The fact sheet is meant to clarify terms and issues around building performance in earthquakes.

The professional organisations are IPENZ, SESOC, the New Zealand Geotechnical Society Inc, New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering and the Royal Society of New Zealand. Read more

Strengthening the Christchurch Arts Centre against Earthquakes

By Juanita Copeland, TV 3 News

One of the biggest repair jobs after the Christchurch earthquake is to fix a heavy stone turret at the Arts Centre, which suffered $25 million worth of damage. Today a crane lowered the turret to the ground where it will undergo repairs that could last well into 2012.

From before dawn a team of structural engineers bolted, tweaked, checked and double checked the turret. Then, six hours later, two sections of the 128-year-old stone structure parted and a 100 tonne crane lowered it to the ground.

“We haven’t got much room to spare up there, everything’s within a few millimetres of where it has to be,” says John Hare, of the Holmes Consulting Group. Read more

A big win for New Zealand structural engineering

Interior-Dome-Supreme-Court-IStructEHolmes Consulting Group has won the prestigious international 2010 Structural Award in the Heritage category from the Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE) in London

The award-winning project was the structural design of the new Supreme Court of New Zealand and the simultaneous seismic retrofit of the Old High Court.

“The protection of the old High Court building and its architectural heritage, particularly in Wellington, is an achievement that all those involved can be proud of. It also ensures that the building’s association with New Zealand’s legal history will continue well into the future,” Ministry of Justice Assistant Deputy Secretary (Courts) Andrew Hampton says. Read more

A new hangar in Malta

QANTAS Hangar, BrisbaneHolmes Consulting Group is again working with partners Air Support Industries (ASI) on a new maintenance, repair and overhaul hangar (MRO), located at Malta International Airport.

The project, which is being built for SR Technics, will include a 10,000 m² hangar, office space of approximately 5,000 m² and an adjacent workshop.    Read more

The last place you’d want to be

Christchurch-Aftershock-engineerWhen the big 5.0 aftershock hit Canterbury today, our engineer John Hare was on a platform suspended from a crane, high above Christchurch Cathedral along with Ben West of Stoneworks. The aftershock rocked for over 10 seconds – and has been cited as one of the most powerful since the initial 7.1 event on 4 September.

As the Christchurch Press reports:

Hare hugged the cross as it swayed about 10 centimetres and West gripped the stone gable.

Hare said it was “very exciting”.

“Imagine the last thing you would want to be doing when it hits, and this was it,” he said. “There was that moment when everything flashed before my eyes, but thankfully it didn’t come to that. It was waving around a hell of a lot.” Read more

Seismic lessons

Derek and Lynn Anderson still remember the swaying. Not a familiar restful motion but a relentless oscillation as Christchurch’s September 4 earthquake grasped their modern eighth-floor city apartment.

For 30 seconds, the couple huddled in a doorway as their solid and much-loved home in the eight-year-old Park Terrace apartments became a small lifeboat tossed by seismic waves.

“My first thought when I woke was how much the building was swaying and creaking. We’d just returned from Australia where we’d been in a boat in rough seas off the Great Barrier Reef. So we’d had some practice,” Lynn Anderson says. Read more

Leading the world in earthquake engineering

Andy Buchanan, of the University of Canterbury, wrote this opinion piece for The Press in Christchurch.

In it, he credits the rigorous work of engineers in New Zealand, including our founder, Lyall Holmes, for contributing to the low level of loss of life and property.

It provides a good perspective on the development of earthquake engineering in New Zealand.

Advanced techniques save heritage buildings

The Christchurch Art Gallery was used as the city headquarters in the early days after the earthquake.John Hare discussed with Lorelei Mason of TV One News how Holmes Consulting Group’s analysis has helped preserve the Christchurch Arts Centre and the Christchurch Cathedral from the devastating 7.1 earthquake that struck on 4 September 2010. The video can be found here.

For more information on some of our advanced techniques, Knowledge Central offers the opportunity for you to see how structures will stand up to an earthquake. By downloading our program ‘Showtime’ and the files you can see how forces such as an earthquake will affect the structure by controlling different aspects of the program.