The demolition of the main clinical service building of the former Napier Hospital is now at the stage where the populace below can see the hilltop landscape changing.
Now two months into the demolition programme, which is on schedule and due to be wrapped up in October, the centre of the six-storeyed building has been gutted and the top two floors torn down.
From below, the gaps are now quickly spotted as sunlight pours through the holes.
The site is being cleared to make way for a new residential sub-division which is being developed by the Todd Property Group, and will include two residential high-rises comprising 36 apartments, with one of the blocks to feature a ground floor cafe and the second a gymnasium area for residents.
Todd Property managing director Evan Davies said the company was committed to building what he called a "high-quality development" on the hill, which would reflect the nature of the area, its prominent location and the views it offered. Contractors, Demolition 1, have been using a 68-tonne long-reach excavator as its main "bring it down" tool and was removing the blockwork and framework piece by piece from the top down.
Large chunks of concrete could be seen dangling at the end of reinforcing steel strips, and cables with parts of Hospital Tce on the northern side below coned off to traffic.
Aluminium and steel fittings, along with timberwork, concrete and interior cladding was being collected aside for recycling.
Clearing the site was the first major job for the company with the next stage set to be the Arohaina apartment development.
However, with the focus at this time firmly on the main block, construction of the Arohaina section has been deferred and starting dates for that project would be looked at later in the year.