Fire burning for 2nd day disrupts centre of New Zealand city

WELLINGTON, New Zealand — A fire burning for a second day at a convention centre that was under construction in New Zealand’s largest city is causing more disruption and casting doubt on whether the building will be ready to host a meeting of world leaders in 2021.

Officials say a mixture of bitumen, straw and plywood in the roof cavity of the seven-story structure was continuing to burn and firefighters can’t properly access the area. They plan to let the fire burn itself out later Wednesday.

City workers have been told to avoid downtown Auckland if they can, and some buildings and streets remain closed.

The New Zealand International Convention Centre was scheduled to open next year and host the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in 2021.

The Associated Press