As the spectacular demolition of Freyberg House draws to a close, the wrecking ball is turning to another building further up the road in Wellington.

Revera House is next in the firing line after it also suffered damage in the Kaikoura earthquake.

Wellington City Council building resilience manager Steve Cody said a crane was installed on the site last week and the interior of the building had already been stripped.

"It's effectively just a structural shell that's left and the first thing will be the removal of the precast concrete panels which are the outside cladding on the building."


Cody said the building would then be disassembled from the top down.

Meanwhile, tearing down the former home of the Defence Force is proving more difficult than first anticipated.

Cody said it was in a challenging location being next to apartments and commercial buildings.

"Defence House was a really big building that was built right up tight to the boundaries on one of the busiest roads in the city.

"It was a fairly modern building so therefore there's a lot of steel, there was a lot of concrete. Even though it was damaged in the earthquake, Fletchers have been commenting on how challenging it's been to demolish."

Mulgrave St has been reduced to one lane for weeks while a container wall to protect passing pedestrians and motorists from debris is installed.

Cody said the road would be back to full capacity by February 12 when the building was expected to be reduced to ground level, then the rubble had to be removed and an area underneath the building also demolished.

He said there was little traffic management could do to ease disruption to motorists, apart from putting up signage to warn them.

Demolition work underway on Defence House in Wellington. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Demolition work underway on Defence House in Wellington. Photo / Mark Mitchell

"We're trying to get the building down as quickly as possible and keep the pain to the city down to the bare minimum but there will be disruption in the short term."

"We are also trying to have a working city as opposed to having cordons or red zones."

The area is no stranger to earthquake demolition after 61 Molesworth St was swiftly torn down with fears it was at imminent risk of collapse following the November 14, 2016 shake.

Thorndon Residents Association chair Marion Cowden said the suburb was going to be a construction site for some time as new buildings replaced those demolished ones.

She said motorists were the most disrupted by the process.

"All of the people in Wellington who flood through Thorndon and use it ether as a transit point to get into the city as they commute or who park in the area."

She said Thorndon and the parts of the city surrounding it seemed to be bearing the brunt of the earthquake but people were getting on with it.

"There was an earthquake in November 2016. Buildings were damaged, we've found that some had to come down and that happened to be the corner of town that was most affected and that's just a fact of life."