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Shrink-wrapped building sites

·149 words
Felix Andrews
I’m travelling in New Zealand. There’s a lot that’s familiar coming from Australia. But one thing that stood out for me is that they shrink-wrap their building sites.

A quick google brings up at least a dozen companies offering shrink wrapping services. They tout the benefits of rain protection. Being able to continue work regardless of rain does seem like a good idea: it would make the process more predictable for everybody.

Obviously it comes at a price. The wrap goes on a scaffolding superstructure. This article from 2012 puts it at around $10,000 to completely wrap a house.

Shrink-wrapped building site in central Queenstown

The practice seems to have become common as a result of New Zealand’s Leaky Homes Crisis rectification program around 2010. The wraps allowed people to continue living in their homes while the cladding was being replaced. And unlike tarpaulins, they let some light through.