Demolition for historic building

Work will begin on the 1939 art deco portion of the Commercial Hotel site. Photo supplied.

Work will begin on Monday to demolish the art deco portion of the old Commercial Hotel in Whakatane.

The 1939 art deco portion of the site is being levelled, before it and the neighbouring former Bank and public house will be resurveyed and sold. The corner pub building will remain on the site.

The building is currently owned by Bay of Plenty Regional Council, who made the decision to sell the property earlier this year.

The Regional Council’s Property Manager, Annabel Chappell, says a key reason for the demolition of the section, which is earthquake-prone and derelict, was to ensure the preservation of the historic corner public bar.

“Currently the 1939 building is an earthquake and fire risk and we would not want anything to occur which could see the town lose a valuable piece of history, in the corner pub. Although we are conscious that the 1939 hotel holds a special place in many people’s memories, it has no real heritage value.”

The Regional Council say they are keen to see the site being developed in a way that is complementary to Whakatane District Council’s Town Vision.

The majority of the demolition work will be done from the rear of the building and won’t be visible from the front building façade until the final stages of the project.

The demolition of the art deco building is expected to reduce the fire and vandalism risk to the historic corner pub.

A karakia ceremony is being led by Ngati Awa on Monday morning before work begins to demolish the building.

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Posted on 09-09-2017 11:49 | By Me again

humans, old trucker, buildings also eventually die of old age or become derilects. But here in Tauranga it called TOO moldy.

Exactly old trucker

Posted on 08-09-2017 17:34 | By Border Patrol

I wonder how many lovely heritage buildings around the country will be demolished under the guise of the building being earthquake prone.

Read the article

Posted on 08-09-2017 16:46 | By abacab

The building on the corner (an old bank and the nice building) is staying. They are only demolishing the art deco add-on, the bit on the left hand side of the photo.


Posted on 08-09-2017 16:21 | By overit

shake my head in sadness, to be replaced by something modern and plastic. Yuk. I am not sure why the building needs a karakia though.

golly gosh

Posted on 08-09-2017 15:01 | By old trucker

What a CRYING SHAME, Beautiful building, what is wrong with it, it says it is derilect, so are the people who make this call, my thoughts only, No1 is Sunlive, Thankyou, 10-4. out.phew.