The CQ Hotel presented an exciting challenge for NZCEL; how to strengthen a brick masonry building to 100% NBS without impacting its beautiful, recently refurbished heritage façade?

A strengthening scheme was proposed that would overcome the risk of out-of-plane failure of the unreinforced masonry walls. This was achieved by adding additional steel frames internally, and an external steel frame to the rear of the building and to the street-facing façade. The latter was made up  of elegantly mounted steel mullions barely visible by the naked eye, preserving the integrity of the heritage façade. Construction methodology was also paramount, as the hotel needed to remain operational during construction! Working alongside Built Construction Group and architects Inside Design, the project was completed in 2017

The CQ Hotel at 207-219 Cuba Street is a good example of classical Edwardian architecture, contributing to the townscape aesthetic of Cuba Street. Its grand façade belies the fact that it was built as a refuge for the poor, and as accommodation for travelling working class. Originally the building was a three-storey brick masonry design with Jarrah flooring and roof joists – but a timber framed fourth floor was added in 2004.