A building at the Historic Village contaminated by asbestos will soon be demolished.

Building 50, a barn built in the 1980s from recycled materials situated at the back of the village, is not classified as historic, and has not been in use since the contamination was found in September.

The building's demolition will begin next Monday and, together with other asbestos removal work at the village, will cost up to $75,000.

Historic Village team leader Blair Graham said an asbestos survey was carried out at the village last year as part of the normal asbestos management programme required by law.


"It's come to a point now where we need to deal with it. There were medium risk and low risk instances of asbestos found, as there are all over Tauranga. We've always known there was asbestos on site - as there is everywhere.

"It's safe providing it's managed correctly - don't drill holes in it, don't scratch it up".

Mr Graham said building 50 had earthquake safety and weathertight issues. It had minimal use.

"We have been through a feasibility study as to whether to fix it or not. It's more cost effective to remove the building because of all the issues around it.

"We manage asbestos if it's in good condition and it can stay that way indefinitely. If the condition deteriorates, we've got to do something about it."

Once the building is removed, the remaining concrete pad would be used as a native plant nursery.

The plants would be used towards the rejuvenation of the bush area around the village.

There were five asbestos contaminated spots at the village with a medium risk rating that were being removed by specialised contractors, including deposits in two gardens, a section of driveway, a deck and a piece of cladding at the Men's Shed.

The Village would remain open as usual during the works.

Tauranga City Council group communications adviser Rachel Schicker said the removal of the asbestos at the village, including the demolition of the building closed last year, would cost in the region of $70,000 to $75,000.

Ms Schicker said asbestos had been found in a number of council-owned buildings, sites and land that were identified as part of planned maintenance or refurbishment works.

"This is not uncommon as asbestos was in widespread use in New Zealand houses and commercial buildings up to the 1990s and poses no health or safety risk if undamaged.

"In all council-owned buildings where identified asbestos is damaged, deteriorating, friable or is a risk to human health, it is our policy to safely remove the material using approved contractors."

She said because of the age of the buildings in the Historic Village, the council knew there would be a high likelihood some would contain asbestos, so this area was surveyed as a priority.