Posts Tagged ‘rebuild’

Christine and I set out this morning with some trepidation as the forecast was for rain. We bundled up warmly and drove to Dallington, north-east of the central city. We’d planned to start our walk from the newly opened Dallington Landing, which we understood was at the corner of Gayhurst and River Roads. However, that location was not easily found and we eventually parked by the recently rebuilt Medway Footbridge, the third bridge on that site.

Medway Footbridge

The previous Medway Bridge was completely destroyed in the 2011 earthquakes, and part of it now forms a memorial.

Munted Medway Bridge

We followed the river back to Gayhurst Road where we discovered the Dallington Landing. This area is attractively planted, and all funded by the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal Trust.

Dallington Landing

We’d met only one brief shower of rain, and were pleased to sit in a dry shelter to have our morning snack. On the way back we saw several swans and a few traffic cones that had been dumped in the river.

Swans and cones

We popped in to check out the Dallington Craft Shop at the corner of McBratney’s Road, where they offer free books, magazines, and jigsaws. I couldn’t resist adopting a couple of jigsaws to add to my collection. Round the corner the Dallington op shop was also open, so we browsed there. For just one dollar I bought a hole punch to replace my old one which is inclined to leak small bits of paper. All in all, a satisfying expedition.

After a walk it’s good to stop
and browse an interesting shop

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Broken parking meter

This parking meter in Worcester Boulevard has obviously been vandalised.  When I walked past just before 10am this morning there were several dollar coins on the footpath and in the metal box.  I was surprised no-one had picked them up and I guess it goes to show how little foot traffic there is in that area.

I met a friend for morning tea (no need for social distancing now!) at Miro.  The ambience and outlook there is lovely, but we were disappointed no cabinet food was offered.  I had chips, but these were not as good as the ones I had at Ballantynes three weeks ago, and I ate less than half of them.

North Frame Pedestrian Bridge

On the way home I passed the new North Frame Pedestrian Bridge currently under construction.  Unfortunately the art bridge which was originally intended got cancelled, and the replacement will be pedestrian in more than one sense.  It will be completed in early 2021.  Personally I can’t see any need to have an extra bridge between Colombo and Manchester Streets.  What do you think?

The meter has been pulled apart.
The bridge can hardly be called art.

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Two innovative inner city schools, Discovery 1 and Unlimited Paenga Tawhiti occupied a central city site until the building was destroyed by earthquakes.  The two schools have merged to become Ao Tawhiti Unlimted Discovery, and will return to the central city in early 2019.  Thier new campus is currently under construction at the corner of St Asaph and Colombo Streets.

New school on its way

In adjacent Mollett Street the students have designed a creative hoarding called ‘Homecoming’  Different classes created works to hang on the stave ‘like washing on a line’.

Homecoming artwork

It’s good to know the school will soon be back taking advantage of all the learning opportunities the central city can offer.

‘They offer a new way to learn
student directed at each turn.’


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The Rose Historic Chapel in Colombo Street has reopened after earthquake repairs, and the public was invited to visit this afternoon.  I remember walking past in March 2011, when earthquake damage meant you could see right through the building.  Today it looked as good as new.

Rose Chapel

Apparently someone painstakingly collected all the pieces of coloured glass and the exquisite stained glass windows, reputedly some of the best in Canterbury, have been lovingly restored.  I especially like the one that’s dedicated to the memory of the Gardner family.

Gardner family window

I have fond memories of taking weddings in this chapel and it was good to visit today and sit and listen to Helen Webby playing the harp.  There were crowds of people and I’m sure the chapel will again be popular for ceremonies and concerts.  It’s wonderful that one of our historic buildings has been brought back.

“This fine stone chapel now restored
a project we can all applaud.’

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Manchester Street now has two new Barnes Dance crossings, at Gloucester and Worcester Streets.

These allow pedestrians to cross in every direction, with all vehicles stopped while they do.  I remember the very first N.Z. Barnes Dance crossing in Auckland in the late 1950s.

The crossings are named for an American traffic engineer, Henry Barnes, and the system was first used in North America in the 1940s.  Barnes didn’t invent it, but as traffic commissioner in Denver, Baltimore, and later New York, he promoted its use in the centre of these cities.  According to Barnes the name was coined when a reporter wrote that ‘Barnes has made the people so happy they’re dancing in the streets’.

The Barnes Dance became less popular when streets became clogged with vehicles and traffic engineers regarded cars as more important than pedestrians.  It’s good to see more of the dances being constructed in central Christchurch and their benefits for pedestrian safety recognised.

“To walk diagon’ly across
just shows the drivers who is boss.”


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The mural in Press Lane is now complete, and includes signs alluding to what was there before.

Along the lane is printed the ‘Press’ motto  Nihil utile quod non honestum.  It was impossible for me to get a photo of the whole thing because the lane is narrow.

“I like the way the lane can be
an aid to people’s memory.”

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Last week there was scaffolding outside the new Oxford Terrace Baptist Church while they were setting the old pillars in place.

Today it’s all complete and ready for the official opening this afternoon.  It’s good to see the pillars back, even if there’s only a few of them.

“Another building has returned
for which its people long have yearned.”




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Matai Common

Matai Common in Mollett Street is part of the enhancement of the city’s South Frame.  The idea is to use stories, plants, and landscape design to create a unique and welcoming urban place.   It features attractive plantings with boards explaining how the various native plants can be used.

Matai Common

Today the only inhabitants were rebuild workers on their morning break, but there are monthly Sunday markets here, and an invitation for other community events.  Yikes is responsible for the mural near the Colombo Street entrance.

Mollett Street mural by Yikes

As the rebuild continues the South Frame will have three more gathering spaces like this, all linked by pedestrian and cycle ways.

“A common space where we can rest
when relaxation is the quest.”


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King Edward Barracks

Kai Tahu have made a wonderful job of redeveloping the site where the King Edward Barracks used to stand.  The buildings surround a central park called Nga Mara o Te Wera (the gardens of Te Wera).

There are many lovely touches, such as the drawings of birds along the edges of the grassed area.

A sculpture of a shell by Virginia King is a tribute to Lisa Willems who lost her life in the February 2011 earthquake.

The original foundation stone for the Barracks has been preserved, and a plaque alongside says “The cry of many voices lost.  Forever held in our memories.”

One wall has many studs, each with the initials of one of the team who led the project.

This whole place demonstrates care and love in a way which is not often seen, and it is a pleasure to visit.

“The Barracks have emerged anew
with history acknowledged too.”

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I love this sign on a seat outside the old High Street Post Office (now C1 Espresso).  It commemorates the Christchurch that was bulldozed by bureaucracy in 2015.

Nearby is an older plaque commemorating our first public water supply in 1864.

On the footpath there’s a barely legible sign which says “there’s nothing to see here.”

Perhaps this path, complete with bronze corgis, should be renamed revolution corner?

“This rebel area of town
could turn convention upside-down.”


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