Preparation for the demolition of Wellington central's earthquake-damaged Reading Cinema carpark building has begun.

Wellington City Council recovery manager Mike Mendonca said the scaffolding has already been taken down from around the Tory St building, and the equipment for the demolition will be put in place over the next few days.

The machinery needed to demolish the building is being moved from 61 Molesworth St, where it was being used to pull down a seriously damaged office building.

Demolition for the carpark building is due to begin on January 4.

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The building suffered significant structural damage in last month's 7.8 magnitude earthquake.