The Reserve Bank building in central Wellington is expected to reopen next week after it was evacuated earlier this week because of asbestos contamination.

Inspections and air quality testing was carried out after asbestos traces were discovered on level 1 on Wednesday, spokesman Mike Hannah said today.

The 14-storey building on the corner of The Terrace and Bowen St was closed and workers sent home after the asbestos was discovered.

The asbestos on level 1 had been remediated and results had been clear on all levels where air quality testing had been completed. Inspections and testing was continuing on other floors.


Meanwhile, essential operations would continue to operate from its Auckland premises.

"We routinely inspect and conduct air monitoring across the building. We closed the building to inspect all levels and confirm that there is no risk to human health," Hannah said.

"The safety of our people and tenants is our number-one priority," he said.

The building, across the road from Parliament, also houses the Parliamentary Counsel office, the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, State Services Commission and the Defence Force.