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A lot of behind-the-scenes work has taken place for the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral – now physical works are set to begin

Green light for Christ Church Cathedral stabilisation works

Much-anticipated physical work gets underway shortly on Christ Church Cathedral following a critical resource consent being granted that allows the project to begin stabilisation works for the cathedral.


Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement project director Keith Paterson says in simple terms, it means the much-anticipated physical work can finally get underway, but in real terms, it’s the beginning of a complex set of interventions, the likes of which the earthquake-damaged heritage building has never seen.

As stabilisation work progresses and provides the necessary support to the damaged areas, workers will be able to enter the building under controlled conditions and carry out further physical investigations.

“This investigative work is key in informing the next step in the construction sequence, which is strengthening work. Very soon we’ll establish the site offices and prepare the site for construction and then from around August people will progressively see steel framing and scaffolding being erected and, later on, temporary weather-proofing,” says Mr Paterson.

“The sequence of work includes some deconstruction of badly damaged sections of the cathedral. This is needed to provide access to the interior and manage hazards, and these parts of the building will be later reinstated. The removal of the more recent additions to the cathedral will give safer and faster access to stabilise the main cathedral.”

Energising and exciting

Mr Paterson says the stabilisation phase is expected to take 18–24 months. “While aspects of the building will look different during this period, the structure of the cathedral will be supported in place and, once reinstated, the cathedral will look very similar.”

Peter Carrell, Anglican Bishop of Christchurch, says he’s delighted that people will shortly see work happening. “A lot of work has happened to date, mostly behind the scenes in planning, procedural and safety spaces. Now that physical work can begin, the site will have activity, which is energising and exciting. We can rejoice that the journey to reinstate a living cathedral back in the centre of town can start,” Bishop Peter says.


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