Weathertightness remediation

This guidance provides school boards and property professionals with the details of the Ministry’s weathertightness remediation programme. For buildings either built or modified primarily between 1994-2005, the programme will address any occurrences of weathertightness failure. However, all buildings will be dealt with on a case by case basis.

Level of complianceMain audienceOther

Required

  • Boards
  • Principals and Tumuaki
  • Project Managers
  • Architects and Designers
  • Building Surveyors
  • Property Managers
  • Property Professionals

This programme addresses state school buildings that have been subject to destructive testing reports, as part of the Ministry’s national survey of buildings with weathertightness issues – but are yet to have remedial work completed.

Keeping school buildings weathertight

If you become aware of a weathertightness issue causing damage or an issue that may represent a health and safety concern, this situation should in the first instance be:

  • addressed through your usual maintenance processes, or
  • brought to the attention of the Ministry property advisor depending on the severity or urgency.

Work to keep buildings weathertight will normally be funded from your Property Maintenance Grant or more significant projects scheduled as part of your 5 Year Agreement (5YA).

For buildings either built or modified between 1994 and 2005, the Ministry’s remediation programme will address any occurrences of weathertightness failure in such buildings. However, all buildings will be dealt with on a case by case basis.

What is weathertightness failure?

Weathertightness failure happens when water gets past the external cladding of a building. The failure is often a localised matter such as:

  • defective or missing flashings
  • wall and roof cladding penetrations poorly formed
  • inadequate clearance between the base of cladding and adjacent gardens or ground (paved or unpaved).

If left unaddressed, the resulting moisture levels can create further problems and lead to damage and possible health and safety risks.

Remediation Strategy

The Ministry’s Weathertightness Remediation and Regulatory Strategy has key policies to help ensure that weathertightness issues won't arise from current and future remediation works. These are summarised as follows:

  1. All consultants engaged on the basis of competency and experience.
  2. Remediation Inspection Reports to provide evidence that the weathertightness failures identified are responsible for the observed damage.
  3. Documentation shall include sufficient specification, construction detailing and referencing of manufacturer’s technical literature for code compliant construction.
  4. Documentation will be subject to review, normally at two stages, Preliminary and Detailed Design.
  5. Contractors are to be selected on the basis of competency and experience.
  6. The consultants engaged to document the works are also required to undertake construction observation.
  7. Quality Assurance processes to be implemented so that the proposed and completed remedial works are code compliant and appropriate to the weathertightness failures and consequential damage.
  8. Completion documentation added to the Ministry’s property file.

For architects, designers, building surveyors and other property professionals involved with remediation, the full document can be accessed in the Toolbox below.

Ministry's approach to weathertightness remediation

General objectives in relation to weathertightness remediation Which includes:
  • address all urgent health and safety issues as a priority
  • repair weathertightness failures and consequential damage
  • complete the work with the least disruption to schools as possible, and
  • ensure all remediation work complies with the NZ Building Code.
Initial desktop exercise to review all existing information As part of the approach, which may include:
  • conversations with the school staff
  • previous building survey reports
  • information gathered during the annual school visits, and
  • any other building condition assessments.

Remediation Inspection

Once the existing information has been reviewed, the Ministry will usually organise a remediation inspection by an appropriately briefed Registered Building Surveyor.

Who is involved in the onsite inspection?
  • The principal
  • The caretaker
  • Other staff members with knowledge of weathertightness issues.
Purpose of the Remediation Inspection?
  • Accelerate the process of remediation
  • Find the most effective solution for repair. 

Where weathertightness failures and consequential damage are found to be localised, this approach can help reduce potential disruption to the school.

Your property adviser will be able to advise you further on the process.

Getting the work done

Where possible, the actual remediation work to address the weathertightness issues will be incorporated into your next 10 Year Property Plan (10YPP) in line with your 5YA budget cycle, or included in another capital work programme currently underway.

If the work is urgent or high risk it will be addressed as quickly as possible. The current 10YPP may need to be revised.

The Ministry will provide technical support. 

This includes arranging for a registered building surveyor to:

  • meet with the principal, caretaker or other staff members with knowledge of the weathertightness issue
  • review any previous survey reports
  • undertake onsite inspections, and
  • identify the proposed remediation solution.
Weathertightness Review Panel (WRP) Provides technical assistance around weathertightness remediation works and also undertakes independent reviews of project specific documentation at the following key stages:
  • Remediation Inspection report,
  • preliminary design, and
  • detailed design.

Repairing destructive testing patches

Repair of the patches from previous destructive testing will be included within weathertightness remediation projects. Where previous invasive testing has been undertaken and the current outcome is that no weathertightness remediation is required, the Ministry will pay the full cost to repair the invasive testing and of the remediation inspection.

Funding the work

For buildings built or modified primarily from 1994 onwards and subject to weathertightness failure, the cost will be funded partly from your 5YA budget based on the following approach.

Fully owned Ministry Buildings

  • Schools will pay 50% of the cost from the current 5YA budget capped at 50% of the 5YA budget value, plus all residual 5YA funds from previous cycles.
  • The Ministry will top up your 5YA budget for the difference.

Buildings jointly owned between the Ministry and a board (or other third party ownership)

  • As above for the portion that is Ministry owned.
  • The board will be fully responsible for the remediation costs of its portion.

Wholly board owned property

  • The board will be fully responsible for the remediation costs.

Important

For wholly board-owned property, the Ministry may provide technical assistance to boards with inspection and review process but does not contribute to meeting the associated costs. Note also that any defective school buildings with potential or current legal claims will be addressed on a case by case basis.

If you have exhausted your 5YA funding talk to your property advisor. There are existing processes in place to cover this kind of situation.

Toolbox

The Ministry’s current set of templates, forms and guidance documents for weathertightness remediation can be accessed below.

Key documents (for all property professionals)
DownloadNotes
Ministry of Education Weathertightness Remediation and Regulatory Strategy [PDF, 849 KB] The Ministry's overarching document that sets out the strategy for remedial works
Quality Assurance Requirements [PDF, 395 KB] This document sets out the Ministry’s quality assurance requirements and covers all aspects of the remediation process
Weathertightness Remediation Process Map [PDF, 201 KB] This document provides a visual summary of the remediation process
Weathertightness Review Panel (WRP) Guide #1: Information for Weathertightness Documentation Reviews [PDF, 248 KB] This guide provides an overview of the remediation process and required deliverables at the preliminary and detailed design stages
Tools for Building Surveyors
DownloadNotes
Weathertightness Review Panel (WRP) Guide #2: Information for Building Surveyors [PDF, 116 KB] This guide provides the information required to facilitate a remediation inspection report
Weathertightness Remediation Inspection Report Template [DOCX, 800 KB] Use this template for preparing a remediation inspection report
Technical Briefing Note to Support the Weathertightness Remediation Inspection Report Template [PDF, 242 KB] Refer to these notes when completing the template for a remediation inspection report
Model Weathertightness Remediation Inspection Report [PDF, 4.1 MB] This document provides a completed example of a remediation inspection report for a school building
Tools for Architects and Designers
DownloadNotes
Design Report Template [DOCX, 1.1 MB] Architects and Designers to use this template at the preliminary and detailed design stages
Project Specific Quality Assurance Plan Template [DOCX, 58 KB] Architects and Designers to use this template from the detailed design stage onwards and provide a breakdown of the key work stages to be inspected on site
Model Project Specific Quality Assurance Plan [PDF, 3.5 MB] This document provides a completed example of a project specific QA plan
Presentations
DownloadNotes
NZIA Webinar: Weathertightness Remediation for State School Buildings(external link) Download this June 2019 webinar from the NZIA webstore for an overview of the Ministry’s Remediation Strategy including the key policies, processes and regulatory compliance guidance.

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