15 November 2019

Update on the NZICC Fire

On the afternoon of the 22nd of October, a fire broke out on the roof of the New Zealand International Convention Centre (NZICC). Firefighters and emergency services worked relentlessly to get it under control.

On Friday 1 November, Fire and Emergency New Zealand officially handed the NZICC site over to Fletcher Building as the fire was completely extinguished.

Now the businesses are working together to assess the damage, where safety and structural assessments and investigations are currently underway to determine the impact on the delivery timeline.

A Fletcher Construction spokeswoman said access to the site is restricted while safety and structural assessments are completed.

"It will take us some time to understand the extent of the damage to each area within the seven-level, 32,500sq m site.

"We need to assess every floor, every structure and the 1327 car parks beneath the fire where there is water damage."

SkyCity also confirms that contract works and third-party liability insurances are in place for the NZICC.

Graeme Stephens, CEO of SkyCity Entertainment Group says “From the outset, we have shared our vision for the NZICC, New Zealand’s meeting place for the world, and we will work hard to ensure that it not only opens but provides world-class conference, exhibition and entertainment spaces for Auckland and New Zealand.”

The NZICC, SkyCity and Fletcher Building teams would like to thank fire and emergency services for their ongoing efforts in what has been challenging circumstances.

What does this mean for the future of the NZICC?

Until the extent of the damage is known, it is difficult to advise opening timeframes for NZICC and any impacted events.

To date, the only change is Asia-Pacific Association for International Education (APAIE) in March 2021. Recently it was confirmed they will change their rotation to remain at the NZICC in a future year. All other bookings are waiting for an update but also putting contingency plans in place with most being accommodated in Auckland. Those that are unable to be accommodated with contingency plans in Auckland are considering other options in New Zealand or changing their rotation to a future year for the NZICC and Auckland. The NZICC, Auckland Convention Bureau and Tourism New Zealand continue to provide support and assistance where alternative venue options need to be considered. This is ongoing.

While we wait for an update, we want to re-iterate Auckland Convention Bureau’s message that Auckland is still open for business. Auckland has existing capacity and availability to host business events up to 2,000 delegates, with a variety of world class convention, incentive and hotel venues. Please feel free to contact the team here.

Prue Daly, Director of Sales and Marketing said, “On behalf of the NZICC team, I want to extend a heartfelt thanks to our clients and partners for their support and understanding during this challenging time. To see the ‘Team Auckland’ community rally to provide support, has showcased as a destination how well we collaborate for the success of our clients. The messages and kind words received from our New Zealand and Global Business Events community has been overwhelming and greatly appreciated by our team.”