Christchurch CBD more war zone than red zone



Take a walk through the central city and it will remind you of a war zone.

The Campbell Live piece a few weeks back was devastating – devastating because it told the truth and showed New Zealand what is really happening (and not happening) in our city.   See here, and here, and here.


Businesses have moved on and built in Addington, Sydenham and Victoria Street.  Property developers are saying the cost of land and building means they’re unlikely to build in the central city, and that tenants can’t afford the rents anyway.

We’ve had massive capital flight because the Government didn’t tear down the wire fence walls soon enough and has mismanaged the central city rebuild.

This Government has no interest in pro-actively building affordable homes in the central city on the scale necessary to help stimulate growth and urban renewal.

I walk the central city most days.  This week, while walking to a meeting, I took three photos that summarise the state of the central city.  In the space of five hundred metres along Colombo Street to Worcester Street we have:

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  • vast empty space and buildings still be demolished 3 1/2 years after the first earthquake (in this photo the old City Council office on Tuam Street);
  • the remains of a demolished building next to Cashel Street – including stagnant water, road cones, broken plastic chair and other rubbish; and
  • a stunning example of street art on Worcester Street on the building next to what was my workplace from 2006 to 2008.

Destruction, desolation, demolition.  And beauty hinting at a better future to come.


But that hope of a better future doesn’t rest with this Government.

(All photos taken by Tony)