Aftermath - Heritage Matters

1 hour
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Christchurch’s architectural heritage is in danger of being reduced to rubble either through complete collapse or demolition. Many of those that have gone have been fraught with controversy. Some say the erasure of an estimated 50% of the city historic buildings is an opportunity to kick-start an already ailing city centre. Heritage advocates have been accused of ignoring the risk to human life and hanging on to a colonial history now past its use-by date. Property owners have been accused of “demolition by neglect”. Cera has been blamed for using post-earthquake emergency legislation to bring buildings down without due consideration of heritage values. Many say safety is of the upmost importance while others say the demise of cultural identity is an unprecedented tragedy.

As other New Zealand cities reassess the safety or otherwise of their historic buildings, we ask experts on both sides of the save or raze divide what’s best for Christchurch city in the future.