'Significant' Wellington mural to be saved from quake-hit Molesworth St building

Fears that a highly-regarded mural inside a quake-hit Wellington building would be lost have been allayed after demolition crews managed to keep it in one piece.

Jim Allen's concrete mural has been a feature of 61 Molesworth St since it opened in 1965. Source: 1 NEWS

Sculptor Jim Allen's concrete mural, which is seven metres long and three metres high, has been a feature of the foyer of 61 Molesworth Street since it opened in 1965.

Inspired by the micro-structure of copper crystals, the mural has been described by art conservators as a significant piece of work, and one of only a few murals left in New Zealand from the modernist era.

When it was announced the building would have to come down after suffering serious structural damage, art enthusiasts were concerned the artwork would be destroyed.

However, the Wellington City Council says demolition teams worked hard to try and keep it in one piece, and the mural has only suffered superficial damage, with its size and position in the building contributing to it surviving the demolition process.

Rubble is still being removed from the site and when that is complete the mural will be returned to the building's owner Prime Property Limited.

It will be up to them to decide what happens with the mural.

The council says it is working with the owners to support its future.