Christchurch council plan thrown out

L-R: Brownlee, Isaacs, Sutton, Mayor Bob Parker and his wife. Click to enlarge

No more $500 million light rail schemes or reverting one-way streets to two-way at a cost of $91 million.

Today, Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee ditched the Christchurch City Council’s recovery plan.

Mayor Bob Parker put a brave face on things at the media conference today, even claiming the city plan’s “visionary” Volume 1 themes had been enshrined.

The new arrangement would be a “true partnership”, he said.

But the reality is that the actual proposals contained in Volume 2 have been thrown out of the recovery scenario.

They included the mayor’s pet light rail project that would have soaked up $500m of the $2 billion recovery plan.

Mr Brownlee announced his appointee, Warwick Isaacs, to head the new Christchurch Central Development Unit that would be within the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority, headed by Roger Sutton.

Mr Isaacs is CERA’s operations manager responsible for demolitions, having left his earlier job as chief executive of Timaru District Council.

The new unit will focus on rebuilding the central business district and Mr Isaacs willproduce an alternative city plan within 100 days.

It will focus on where the first new buildings will be built, such as a convention centre, which will pave the way for new hotel and tourism investment.

He will second to his unit city council staff.

“He’s a can-do guy... ,” Mr Brownlee said.

Mr Isaacs focus will include identifying locations for significant buildings, preparing development options, consider land amalgamation, promote and attract developments to local and overseas investors, and co-ordinate with other government departments.

To date, 30%, or 600, of the central city’s 1936 buildings have been demolished – more than half those that are earmarked for demolition.

Mr Brownlee said more than 15 international examples of redevelopment structures were reviewed to examine powers, processes and implementation of city recovery.

These included the redevelopment of Beirut’s CBD, Lower Manhattan, London’s Docklands and Brisbane’s Southbank Development Corporation.


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14 Comments & Questions

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Tell me why was the mayoress in the front row? Where was Mrs Brownlee?

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"He's a can do guy".. I tell him to level the city and he says can do

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She was on the end of his right arm Doug

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About time.
The CCC dreamings of schoolboy railways and pretty green buildings was Bob's folly, he's a goner.

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Talk about fiddling while Christchurch burns.

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Yuck: 80s convention centres and tourism investment - way to boost an economy Brownlee

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Is the CEO of Buller and Timaru councils up to the $2B rebuild job ? Planning the rebuild of 1000 buildings in 100 days is no small town stuff - think they should have spread the net wider - tragic case of jobs for the boys. Poor Christchurch.

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I come from a third world corrupt dictatorship having lived in NZ for many yearsnow. This reminds of some of the early behaviour of the ruling politicans many years ago - their arbitrary actions in guise of efficiency and for the people. nZ will rue the day that John key became PM, aided by Michell Boag; and behaving like he is still a salesman getting commission on transactions.

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What a great idea rebuild the city centre in the middle of liquefaction. The big question is who is going to insure it there is NO way the tax payer should be assuming that responsibility. Who is going to rent these building and put their employees at risk?, Who in Chch who went through those quakes would want to work there?
Chch central is munted and its time we all stopped pretending. Let focus on outer areas and get started.

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<quote>What a great idea rebuild the city centre in the middle of liquefaction.</quote> Wiki's entry for Christchurch Central City implies that the central city did have liquefaction (though it is more associated with eastern areas) but says because its infrastructure did not suffer much damage it was felt not worth relocating it.

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Great!
Some intelligent, definate action as last

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There was relatively little liquefaction in the central city but one of the February quakes was centred around Moorhouse Ave, hence the major damage. Scientists measured the highest upward g-forces ever recorded in a quake - more than the Japan quakes. It was like throwing a building 2metres into the air and then there was a trampoline effect just to finish things off.

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Hooray for Gerry. The one chance that Christchurch had to become a European style city with modern public rail based transport systems has now been put on hold. Now back to the future!.

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Rail / shmail.

Just get it started and on the boil.Bloody Christchurch has whined enough.

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