"Church Property Trustees hope to make a final decision on the future of Christchurch’s damaged cathedral by the end of February.
This decision will follow “continuing engagement” with the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA), the City Council, the Historic Places Trust and the general public.
CPT today committed itself to this process in a memorandum to the High Court.
The memorandum – in response to an interim judgement by Justice Lester Chisholm last month – states that different design concepts will be prepared and a selection then made for "further development and engagement."
This selection will reflect the following options:
a. maximum retention and a replica rebuild;
b. partial deconstruction and a mix of 'old and new' based around the current footprint; and
c. more extensive deconstruction and a building with more elements of the new.
The first step is for CPT to provide a copy of the Great Christchurch Buildings Trust (GCBT) building retention proposal to CERA for review.
CPT's own engineers will also look further at options for deconstruction.
CPT has set down the following timetable, depending on how matters progress:
• 6 December – CPT will meet to consider and provide direction on design work to the Cathedral Project Group.
• December – The Cathedral Project Group will advance the design brief with the architects.
• Early January 2013 – CPT hopes to receive feedback from CERA and its own engineering review of deconstruction options as well as feedback from the Cathedral Project Group.
• Late January 2013 – CPT will provide direction for cathedral design concept(s)… based on consideration of financial implications as well as heritage, safety and engineering matters, including options for deconstruction. CPT hopes at this point to release a concept for public feedback.• End of February 2013 – CPT hopes to make a final decision on the future of the cathedral building."
We need a cathedral for Christchurch and Canterbury and we need Canterbury and Christchurch to (re)build the cathedral, whether - in the end - it is new, old, or new-old. I think it is good see all the options (a/b/c) above being considered. It seems like a real chance we will have a cathedral design that the people can be inspired by and inspired to give towards.
In other building news a fantastic campaign to improve the quality of rental housing via cardboard boxes is being waged. The campaign uses cardboard boxes which play no actual role in improving housing! In part that campaign is being directed from an office in Theology House. TH is proud to be associated with these efforts to raise the standard of living for people: theology in action! Read the story in today's Press here.