The demolition of the former Masterton hospital is in its final stages, with only four buildings left to come down.
Toitū Te Whenua Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) has been overseeing the large and complex demolition, which required 26 buildings to be removed, since work began in late 2020.
LINZ Project and Hazard Management Delivery Manager Matt Bradley says work will soon get underway to remove the largest building on site – the three-storey ward.
“While we have already managed to salvage a significant amount of material, the three-storey ward is where we expect to save the most.
“This building was previously covered in lead-based paint which has been carefully removed to enable the concrete to be crushed and repurposed.”
Mr Bradley says clearing the three-storey structure will take about three weeks.
The other structures yet to come down include the former nurses’ home and Nightingale Ward.
“These will take time to clear as both have a large amount of native timber that needs to be carefully removed.”
Mr Bradley says there has been a focus throughout the demolition to salvage as much material as possible.
“Through this commitment, we’ve managed to divert 423 tonnes from landfill.
“While concrete makes up the majority of this, we’ve been salvaging everything, including the kitchen sinks.
“Once the demolition is complete, we expect the total amount salvaged will be around 2800 tonnes.”
Mr Bradley says aside from preventing waste to landfill, there has also been a focus on preserving the history of the old hospital, retrieving items of historical, sentimental, and cultural significance.
The buildings are expected to be cleared by July, with final site works completed by November.
The former hospital is one of around 900 properties including former prisons, schools, houses and other hospitals that are managed and maintained by LINZ and earmarked for future Treaty settlements.