Posts Tagged ‘Earthquake Recovery’

Six years on … the World Has Changed

4 September 2016

Mandeville Bridge

Six years ago today, a defining moment in our history occurred. In this part of Canterbury, our communities often talk about things as before or after the earthquake.

So much has changed and we found ourselves going in directions we never thought we would. Some of those things have been for the better. Yesterday’s fantastic day in Rangiora, following the pain in the town centre, would never have happened (nor would have the pain). We, like other districts and towns in New Zealand, would be arguing over the strengthening of commercial and public buildings.  Not Kaiapoi or Rangiora. Not Oxford.

But we haven’t finished yet and some of what lies before us is exciting.  The plan for the regeneration areas of Kaiapoi and Pines-Kairaki await final ministerial approval, but there will be a lot more to do as a community when we get down to the detail.  I look forward to that!

Still a Lot of Work to be Done in Kaiapoi-Pines-Kairaki Regeneration Areas

14 August 2016

The draft plan that Minister Brownlee has issued for comment (after being prepared by our community) is, in the common jargon, “high level”. The next doing stages will require more detailed engagement with community and planning. I think that is something we can all enjoy.

The Fences have gone from the Junction: an Earthquake Survivor in #Rangiora.

23 July 2016

The facade of the former Junction Hotel  (later Robbies) has been saved and the construction fences have now gone. Great to have the old lady back! 

They’re Gone!

24 February 2016

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The temporary shops are gone from #Rangiora. They’ve served High St businesses well but new buildings have made them unnecessary.

The roadway will get a temporary seal so that High and Durham Streets can reopen to 2-way traffic.

David Ayers, Mayor, Waimakariri

The Temporary Shops are Leaving #Rangiora

18 February 2016

_MG_3477 Reduced

Each night this week the temporary shops have been disappearing from Rangiora. Since mid-2012 they have been helping to keep High Street alive by providing spaces for dislocated retailers. Now, with the new shops being built, they are no longer needed. Most are to be used as sports ground facilities.

Great News for Kaiapoi

16 August 2015

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The former BNZ in Kaiapoi is now vertical,  having been on a lean since the September 2010 quake. Well done to the new owner,  John Shivas, for rescuing this Category 1 heritage building. Canterbury has lost a lot of its heritage, so it’s great to have this one survive.

The building is now being strengthened.

Another New Building in Kaiapoi

14 March 2015

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A new commercial building is arising on the corner of Williams and Charles Streets where the Post Office once was. A corner clock tower is incorporated in the design, a nod to past history. The Post Office originally had a clock tower but this was removed in the 1930s as a safety measure following the Napier earthquake.

Another Job Finished: West Eyreton Memorial Arch

23 February 2015

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The West Eyreton War Memorial Arch has been completely rebuilt. It and that at Cust were the two war memorials that needed extensive repair.

Flowers on the Avon

22 February 2015

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Flowers float down the Avon in memory of those who died on 22 February 2011.

Help Bring Fanfare to Canterbury!

29 September 2014

Fanfare, by renowned sculptor Neil Dawson, was originally hung from the Sydney Harbour Bridge as a feature of the 2005 New Year Celebrations.  It has now been gifted to Christchurch by the City of Sydney and Scape Public Art are raising funds to install it at Chaney’s Corner.  It will be an amazing sight – as we in North Canterbury come off the Waimakariri Bridge, it will be right there – it will also be prominent as we drive on the Main North Road from the old bridge.

look on it as a symbol of Canterbury’s revival from the trauma of the last four years.

You can find out more at http://scapebiennial.org.nz/Bring-Fanfare-Home 

Fanfare-%20Insitu

Work Proceeds on the Junction (Robbies) Facade

9 August 2014

140806 Shotcrete on back of facade, Junction Hotel 1

Much of the façade has now been shotcreted on the back. The concrete you can see has a lot of steel in it.  Once some temporary bracing has been put in place, the rest of the building can be demolished. The bracing will be removed when a new building is constructed by new owners.

Community to be Asked About Future of the Waimakariri Red Zones – Great!

30 July 2014

Minister Gerry Brownlee announced today that a community engagement is about to start with regard to future of the Red Zones in Kaiapoi, The Pines and Kairaki.

The process will be run jointly by the Waimakariri District Council and CERA and will be conducted on a variety of fronts: a website, public meetings or workshops, schools, etc.

Note that this is only for Waimakariri – the Christchurch engagement will happen later.

We encourage people to talk with the families, neighbours and friends and send their thoughts in.

Obviously people in our community have been talking and asking about the red zone future for the last three years, and a lot of suggestions have been made already.  An example has been the work done by The Pines and Kairaki Beaches Association.  All of that thinking will be fed into the mix of ideas that is going to emerge.

The full text of today’s media statement can be found at: http://cera.govt.nz/news/2014/first-chance-to-help-shape-red-zones-future-30-july-2014

 

Farmers Demolition to Start Soon – and Timetable for Rebuild Announced

4 June 2014

The following media statement was issued on behalf of Farmers today.

 

New Farmers store confirmed for Rangiora

 

Rangiora is getting its new Farmers department store.

 

Following a long drawn out insurance claim, settlement has been reached for the town’s earthquake damaged CBD building paving the way for a heads of agreement between Farmers and owners Mandeville Properties to develop a new store.

 

Demolition of the existing building is expected to begin shortly and the new Farmers is expected to open in early 2016.

 

Farmers chief financial officer Michael Power says demolition of the building will enable the council to remove the site fences.

 

“Business people in Rangiora will be delighted as this will bring some normality back to the CBD,” Mr Power says. “Mandeville Properties is a local business and it has worked extremely hard to retain a department store in the town.

 

“Now that the key aspects of the heads of agreement have been agreed we expect to begin construction in January next year. The plan is to have the new Farmers Rangiora store open for business about 12 months after that.”

 

Waimakariri District mayor David Ayers is delighted with the news.

 

“The rebuild and return of Farmers to its existing site is crucial to the revival of the central retail area and the council has been working with Mandeville Properties and Farmers to achieve that.

 

“Along with the strengthening of existing buildings and other new shops currently being designed, Rangiora is going to come back better than ever.  It is going to be exciting to watch the new Farmers and the specialty shops rise over the next 18 months or so.”

 

In February, Farmers and Mandeville Properties said they were in meaningful discussions with the insurers and a collaborative approach to managing the construction of a new store would be taken.

 

The current building suffered extensive damage in successive Canterbury earthquakes. The new store will cover approximately 5,900 square metres and will include up to five speciality shops.

 

Rangiora is the largest town in North Canterbury and has a population of around 16,000.

 

Issued for Farmers by Pead PR

Farmers Announces Plans for Return to Rangiora

5 February 2014

The following is from a media statement released by The Farmers today.

Rangiora’s Farmers department store, closed for nearly two years, will be rebuilt despite an unsettled insurance dispute.  

    The store’s lengthy closure has been blamed for the town centre’s slow recovery following the earthquakes.  

    However, in an announcement today Farmers chief financial officer Michael Power said the company and property owner Mandeville Properties were working together to build a new store on the same site.  

    The new store of approximately 5000 square metres would include up to five speciality shops.   

    The current building suffered extensive damage in the earthquakes and has been the subject of a protracted dispute between Mandeville Properties and ACE Insurance Ltd.   

    Power said Farmers would continue to facilitate discussions between the insurer and the owners on a settlement of the claim.  

    “We understand how difficult this has been for our customers and the wider business community. While the question of insurance has yet to be settled we want to get things moving again as quickly as possible for the benefit of everyone,” Power said.   

    He could not say when construction on the new store would begin.  

    “We’re hopeful of getting things started very soon but because the details are yet to be worked out I really can’t say when a new store will open.” 

The Waimakariri District: Looking Forward to 2014

6 January 2014

For those who missed it, the following appeared in this week’s Northern Outlook. 

2014 should see progress in a number of areas over which residents have expressed frustration in 2013.

The future of the District’s residential red zones has been an issue since their announcement in June 2011. They are now in a very sorry state with their empty sections and abandoned houses – not a great environment for those still living there and nearby. The government and CERA now indicate they are willing to think about these zones’ future and they have agreed that the community and the Council will be involved in determining that future. I expect to see real progress this year along with developments on the Kaiapoi riverbank.

The Kaiapoi and Rangiora town centres have a lot ahead of them. I expect to see owners making decisions for the Rangiora rebuild early in the year as they engage tenants. Work should be getting under way soon on one of the Kaiapoi gaps and during the year final property purchases should enable construction to start on the Red Lion corner realignment and at least the design work by new owners for the Hansens site in Kaiapoi.

At the time of writing, the three main controversial “in limbo” buildings had not had their futures announced by their owners. The John Rhind (former BNZ) building in Kaiapoi (empty since September 2010) and the Farmers and Robbie’s buildings (both empty since March 2012) will soon have those decisions and hopefully reconstruction under way. Work should start on the West Eyreton memorial arch in the second half of the year.

By the end of 2014, much of infrastructure work, mainly in Kaiapoi, but also in Pines-Kairaki , Rangiora, Waikuku and Cust, should be completed. The recent cost-sharing agreement with the government is certainly a help there.

The major projects already started or with contracts awarded will be either completed or nearing completion: the Kaiapoi Library, Museum and Service Centre, the Ashley Bridge and the Rangiora and Oxford Town Halls.

This community has been facing the biggest natural disaster in material terms in NZ history. We are now on the way out with the biggest works programme ever undertaken in North Canterbury.

 

 

Another Heritage Building Demolished: the Ashley Masonic Lodge in Rangiora

17 September 2013

130917 Ashley Masonic Lodge Being Demolished (300x225)The Ashley Masonic Lodge has been demolished this week. It was damaged in the September 2010 earthquake and hasn’t been used since then.  It was a Category II building listed with the NZ Historic Places Trust and was on the Waimakariri District Council’s heritage list in the District Plan.

As with all heritage buildings, a lot of work went into seeing if it was practicable to save it, but the cost of doing so was simply beyond the means of the Lodge.

You can read a bit about the building at http://landmarks.waimakariri.govt.nz/heritageplaces_rangiora/masons_building.aspx

Two Good-News Housing Stories

15 September 2013
130914 Site of Kaiapoi Pensioner Units (400x300)

Site preparation for housing-for-the-elderly units in Kaiapoi

There has been a lot going on in Williams Street in Kaiapoi, just north of Ohoka Road, recently.  A couple of old houses have been demolished and there has been earth-moving and compaction.

This is the site for Kaiapoi’s new housing for the elderly that will replace the units between Hilton Street and Raven Quay, west of the town centre. These units were red-zoned by the Government in 2011 and for a long time the Council was looking for available land that was close to the town centre so that residents could get to the shops easily and which was large enough to contain about 25 units.

This was about all there was and fortunately it was made available to the Council.

On another tack, people have been pointing out that many of the red-zoned houses in Kaiapoi and Christchurch are perfectly sound and are able to be shifted away from their suspect land and reused elsewhere.  There has been a bit of such removal going on, but the availability of land has often been an issue.

In a welcome move, however, the Department of Corrections and Housing New Zealand have joined forces to bring houses out of the red zones and refurbish them at Rolleston Prison. The prisoners will learn skills that should be able to get them jobs when they are released and the houses will be taken over by Housing New Zealand for rental.

130910 Rolleston Prison House Refurbishment (400x300)

Relocated houses being refurbished at Rolleston Prison

As everybody knows, housing supply is a real issue in Waimakariri and Christchurch. These are small steps along the way.

As an indicator of the shortage, the Waimakariri Council usually has about 30 on its waiting list for the 100+ elderly persons’ units it has in Kaiapoi, Rangiora, Oxford and Woodend. Since the earthquakes, that list has about trebled.

 

A Chief Executive – the Waimakariri Story

14 September 2013

While some council chief executives get into the headlines for unfortunate reasons, it needs to be remembered that most don’t – and for good reasons. The Hurunui District Council has just appointed a new one after their previous CE, Andrew Dalziel moved to the CE position at Ashburton District Council, and I am sure that all in North Canterbury will wish Hamish Dobbie well as he takes up his new post.

Meanwhile, you will probably have seen that the Waimakariri District Council has been pleased to reappoint Jim Palmer for a further five years. This will be his third five-year contract (the maximum allowable under the Local Government Act). Over the last three years he has worked with three mayors and the usual changes that occur amongst elected members and has done an outstanding job.

I can comment on the last three years particularly. This District has faced unprecedented challenges a result of the earthquakes. Christchurch and Waimakariri are the two Districts easily most badly affected, which is not to downplay what other Canterbury districts and Environment Canterbury have had to deal with. Jim led a Council team which responded magnificently in the immediate aftermath and which has also had to deal with the all the tasks and changed circumstances that have arisen in the recovery.

That recovery is by no means finished yet and we are very lucky that Jim will be at the helm over  few years.

 

 

Rangiora Town Hall Contract Let – and Other Major Projects Getting Under Way

10 September 2013

100102 Rangiora Town Hall001A

The contract for the strengthening and expansion of the Rangiora Town Hall has been let to Naylor Love. There is no specific start date, but expect it to be soon.  Site clearance has been carried out in preparation.

The tender was below budget, as was that of the new Kaiapoi Library, Museum and Service Centre.

The additions to the hall will assist in the strengthening of the existing part.

Other major projects are making good progress:

  • Work has started on the Kaiapoi library, service centre and museum.  This is the biggest of the post-earthquake projects.
  • Underground replacements and street works around the Kaiapoi bridge are progressing well.
  • The Oxford Town Hall strengthening and the rebuild of the A&P “hall” (part of the Town Hall) will go out to tender soon.
  • Design work is progressing well on the Cones Road Ashley Bridge (the only job here that is not earthquake related).
  • A Kaiapoi Community Board / Council working party has started work on the Kaiapoi riverbanks, including the wharf area.
  • Demolition of the Kaiapoi War Memorial building has commenced.  This will enable work to start on what will be the town’s central playground next to Trousselot Park.

TC3 Land Still in Limbo

24 June 2013

There isn’t a huge amount of “TC3” land in Waimakariri, but for Kaiapoi, a significant amount. Technical Category 3 is its full name. It’s land that needs to have a geotechnical report and a specifically-engineered foundation for any new house built on it.

The Waimakariri District’s TC3 land is all in Kaiapoi, mostly between the NE red zone and Beach Road, with some to the west of the town centre close to the railway line.

We held a meeting for the property owners last week at Kaiapoi High School. It was clear that life remains very difficult and they are feeling that not much has happened. They haven’t had a full report on their land as yet, although the drilling has been done. On top of that, the engineers are still trying to ascertain what is the best way to remediate such land where there is an existing house that doesn’t have to be demolished.

Kaiapoi and Waimakariri are a long way from being over the earthquake.

Rangiora Town Hall Strengthening and Extension About to Start

24 May 2013

Town HallAlthough work was actually authorised and budgeted for a year ago, the Waimakariri Council has just considered submissions to this year’s Annual Plan and has further approved the work. It is hoped to call for tenders in July.  Expressions of interest from construction companies have already been received and there has been an impressive response.

Nearly half the cost of $11.5m will go towards strengthening the existing building, including anchoring the old part to the new extension.

The additions have received the approval of a heritage architect and the New Zealand Historic Places Trust.  This was necessary because it is a Category 2 Historic Building.

The auditorium will receive some upgrading, such as a new orchestra pit and audience seating, but will essentially remain as it is. What the extension will give the community is a flexible 150-seat smaller theatre alongside, greatly improved backstage facilities for performers and crews (the current facilities are awful), much better foyer space both upstairs and downstairs, better toilets for audiences and four smallish rooms that can be used for music tuition, meetings, etc. The movie theatre will be moved downstairs. untitled

While the extensions will take up some of the car-park space, we need to remember that the Council car-park is only 2-3 minues walk away – and it is largely empty in the evenings when most large Town Hall events occur. There is now a footpath beside the driveway connecting the Council car-park with King Street.

Thousands of people used the Town Hall every year before it was closed, either as performers or audiences. This upgrade will meet their needs a lot better. The enhancemen of the town Hall will also help in the revitalisation of the Rangiora Town Centre.

rgatownhall_historic

 

 

Waimakariri Approves Budget for Upgrade of Rangiora’s Red Lion Corner and High Street

24 May 2013

The Waimakariri District Council has approved budget for the major upgrade of the Red Lion Corner and Central High Street.

This has been on the books for three years, before the earthquake, after major community consultation at that time.Red Lion Corner The closure of several premises because of the earthquakes has meant that the programme has been brought forward several years to help in the revitalisation of the town centre.

The problems with the current layout are legion.

  • It is terrible for pedestrians (as is the associated High-Albert Streets corner)
  • The turn from Ivory St east into High St is difficult
  • Driving cross Albert Street from west to east can be perilous
  • Access to the main shopping area from the east is essentially blocked
  • If you want to drive south from High Street you have to first drive north

Really, the only manoeuvres that really work are north-south movement and the left turn past the Red Lion.

The new layout will line up Ivory and Ashley Streets to make a conventional cross-roads controlled by traffic lights.

The Council already owns the the former Westpac building but will need to purchase more property.

Associated with this will be the returning of High Street to two-way traffic with parallel parking. This will oimporve the business environment for retailers at the east end in the area of the BNZ and ANZ banks, make it easier for pedestrians to move around the town and make it possible to come in from the east. At the same time, the Council will be working on improving parking availability in adjacent areas.

Discussions with the RSA about relocation of the Cenotaph will begin soon. The Cenotaph itself is not actually affected, but the new road will pass very close to it.

Assuming property purchase and other issues go reasonably smoothly, wotk could start towards the end of 2014.

Prime Minister Visits Kaiapoi – Gives and Receives Money! Kaiapoi Riverbank Project Gets a Major Boost.

23 May 2013

The Prime Minister John Key, with local Waimakariri MP Kate Wilkinson and yours truly acting as hosts, visited Kaiapoi yesterday. On the still-sloping platform (earthquake!) near the Tuhoe, he was acknowledged for the grant of $2m from the Earthquake Appeal Trust for the Kaiapoi Riverbank Restoration project. Trust member Colin MacDonald, who is also the Chief Executive of the Department of Internal Affairs announced the grant.

It should be noted that a $200,00 grant has also been made to the Cure Boating Club towards the reconstruction of their clubrooms on the north bank, neaKaiapoi Riverr the new library.

The CEO of Sky Television, John Fellet, also announced the donation of $1m from Sky to the Trust to go towards sports recovery in Canterbury.

The Riverbank Project will include restoring the walkway, repairing the wharf and constructing a new boat ramp. The Waimakariri-Ashley Lifeboat building is, of course, not part of the Council’s work, but their new clubrooms will also feature.  It is great that they already have the funding arranged.

Kaiapoi’s history is tied up with the river.  It is the reason Kaiapoi is where it is. This major project is an important step in Kaiapoi’s recovery from the earthqukes.

Waimakariri Council Gives New Kaiapoi Library Final Go-Ahead

23 May 2013

New Kaiapoi Library The Waimakariri Council has given the final go-ahead for the new Kaiapoi Library. It will also include the Council’s Service Centre, the Kaiapoi Museum and an art space providing a similar facility to the Chamber Gallery in Rangiora.

The Library and Service Centre have been closed since the September 2010 earthquake and were demolished a few months ago.

The Museum was formerly housed in the old Kaiapoi Court House. Badly damaged in that quake, it was demolished shortly afterwards. The collection is currently housed in the Air Force Museum at Wigram.

Tenders will be called next month and will include a remodelling of McAllister Square in front of the building and turning Raven Quay on the north side int a one-way pedestrian/vehicles “shared space” connecting the library to the riverbank.

The first floor of the two-storeyed building will afford views out over the Kaiapoi River, which is so central to Kaiapoi’s history.

The design will look something like the early concept shown here.

Kaiapoi Public Meeting Supportive of Council Programme in Town Centre

8 May 2013

Monday’s public meeting in Kaiapoi was supportive of what the Council is doing in the town centre.  The work on the north side of the bridge (pictured below) is almost complete. Next will be the bridge itself, followed by the intersection on the south side.  The intention is to complete that by the time that the new part of Blackwell’s opens in September. Also discussed was the new library / service centre / museum which will go out to tender in a few months.130405 Work in Williams St Kaiapoi (400x267)

Why We Need to Have Strong Town Centres in Kaiapoi and Rangiora

29 March 2013

Follow this link to an article in The Press earlier this month:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/science/8430547/Alpine-Fault-quake-will-melt-rocks

Note that GNS Science calculates that there is a 30% chance of an earthquake on the Alpine Fault in the next 50 years.

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The New Blackwell’s is Well Under Way

29 March 2013

130320 Blackwell's Dept Store Under Construction (400x300)

The Blackwell’s Department Store rebuild is well under way, about to return to its prominent position overlooking both of Kaiapoi’s main axes, Williams Street and the Kaiapoi River.

Badly damaged in the September 2010 earthquake and unoccupied after that, it was demolished after the February 2011 aftershock, when it sustained more damage and was judged to be not repairable.

It has taken a long time to get to this stage, with the usual negotiations with insurers and a lot of work getting the engineering right.

The new building is designed by prominent Christchurch architects, Sheppard and Rout.

Kaiapoi people can’t wait!

080712 Blackwells' Kaiapoi (400x267)

The former building marked the northern entance to the central shopping area on Williams Street.

Another Habitat for Humanity House Being Built in Kaiapoi

27 March 2013
130212 Habitat for Humanity House in Fuller St, Kaiapoi (300x225)

The Fuller St house shortly after it arrived from Bexley.

Habitat for Humanity are putting in another house in Fuller Street, Kaiapoi. Unlikethe previous two, which are next door, this one has been brought in on the back of a truck from the Bexley Red Zone. A group of volunteers from the USA (+ one from Australia) helped prepare the site. I applaud the recycling of houses in this way. Many of the red zone houses are eminently removable and repairable, and it seems a waste to demolish them. Habitat for Humanity is an international organisation that puts up affordable houses all around the world, using a mixture of volunteers and professionals to build them.  It’s great to see them in Kaiapoi. 

130317 Habitat for Humanity House, Kaiapoi 2 (300x200)

The house down on its piles.

Waimakariri Building Consents for Dwellings Still Running at Record Levels

7 March 2013

The building consents issued for dwellings in January and February are running at similar levels to last year.

WAIMAKARIRI DISTRICT: BUILDING CONSENTS FOR NEW DWELLINGS 2013

So far this year (January – February), 224 dwelling permits have been issued. For the same time last year, 127 were issued – and that was historically high.

Specifically for those two months this year, they were:

  • Kaiapoi 66
  • Rangiora 41
  • Oxford 11
  • Woodend 2
  • Small towns / beaches 4
  • Rural Residential 4 (e.g. Mandeville, Fernside) 28
  • Pegasus 45
  • Rural 27

 

Student’s Concept for High St Rangiora Attracts a Lot of Interest

4 March 2013

A concept design for the area where the Lambert Building once stood in Rangiora’s High Street has attracted a lot of attention. Sarah Otway-Howard produced it as a CPIT exercise and it is not too far away from the sort of possibilities the Council is considering.

130211 Concept by Sarah Otway-Howard (400x300)


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