Texas engineer grilled over CTV building
Tue, 24 Jul 2012 6:19p.m.
By Annabelle Tukia
The engineering professor who slammed a government report into the CTV building collapse has today refused to say whether he thought the building was code-compliant.
Professor John Mander would only say that if the council signed the plans off, then they must have been okay.
Mr Mander was called from Texas to testify for the lawyers representing Alan Reay Consulting, the designers of the CTV building.
However when questioned by commission counsel Stephen Mills, he denied that he was behind his scathing review of a Department of Building and Housing (DBH) report that blamed design flaws for the collapse.
Mr Mander told the hearing he believed the building was innovative and revolutionary in its design and construction, but was not so forthright when asked if the designer was the right man for the job.
And while he would not be drawn on whether he believed the six-storey office block met the building standards of the 1980s, when it was built, he did admit elements of its design were not in keeping with best practice.
“This is a tough time to do business, back in the '80s I think everybody was operating with very, very sharp pencils as it were, and stripping out everything that they believed wasn't necessary,” he said.
But he said there was never any excuse for making cost savings that could compromise a building's safety.
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