The lower section of Auckland's closed off Nelson St might re-open later this evening, according to a boss on the Victopia apartment remediation job.
Ian Harris, who represents apartment residents via their body corporate, said this morning: "We hope Nelson St will be open tonight. That's what we're working towards but I can't make any guarantees."
The shut-off section of Victoria St outside TVNZ was this morning again open to traffic, easing city congestion but the section of Nelson St between Victoria St and Fanshawe St remains closed in the meantime while workers secure the site.
Harris said he was not confident Nelson St would re-open in time for the rush hour but he does hope it can open later today.
Nelson St re-opening depended on checks today being made of the Vogel Lane side of the tower, he said.
"Babbage Consultants will inspect the sides of the building and the project manager [Barry Jump, Teak Construction] will let Auckland Transport know when it's safe to re-open Nelson St," Harris said.
"Crews worked long and hard to get Victoria St open,:" he said, telling of the process of netting the south and west faces of the building in case further panels drop.
"It's precautionary," he said telling how two nets, each 24m long by 12m wide, were now erected on the south or Victoria St elevation.
"The nets are from the deck on level 14 to level six, which is where the scaffold is," he said, referring to the protection on the building already encased in white shrink wrap.
The west or Nelson St building facade is now getting a much longer but skinnier net of 40m high by 6m wide, Harris said. That encases the long run of concrete panels on the building's exterior.
No deck areas are being encased in netting but Harris said he wanted to thank apartment owners who had granted access to their homes so work could be carried out.
"The Nelson St net is from the balcony on level 14 dropping down to about level two or three, to encase the exterior panels and those nets will stay until the work is finished on the building," Harris said.
Victopia has 203 units and on Friday, a 40kg concrete panel fell from its upper level.
On Friday, Harris said about 20 per cent of the 203 apartments up to level three had been vacated for $40 million of remedial work that began in March. Work is expected to take about two years.
While an inspection of the building by engineers on Friday had identified other lose panels, Harris said there was no issue for residents continuing to live in the building.
As for Friday's shedding panel, Harris said Babbage Consultants would soon issue a report which he expects to determine why it had fallen.
"The building doesn't leak. It's more of a cladding issue. There's no structural decay. It's steel and concrete predominantly," he said.
"Just the one panel fell off and we waiting for a report from Babbage on that, probably later this week," he said.