Christ Church Cathedral
Following the devastating Canterbury earthquakes in 2011, the much-loved Christ Church Cathedral saw significant damage. The West façade facing the Square collapsed, the tower was badly damaged and collapsed, and significant damage occurred elsewhere across the building.
Warren and Mahoney was selected to reinstate the Cathedral in partnership with Snøhetta Architects. A subconsultant team consisting of heritage architects Salmond Reed, Powell Fenwick, Marshall Day and Boffa Miskell will be working closely with Holmes engineers on this project.
‘Reinstating’ means repairing, restoring, reconstructing and strengthening. The main Cathedral will retain its appearance and many heritage features, but it will be safer, more flexible and comfortable, and better equipped for future worship, civic, social, community and hospitality events.
To the north of the Cathedral, the new Cathedral Visitors’ Centre On the ground level will offer a café, with terraced steps leading down to a lowered, landscaped courtyard and museum and retail. To the south will be the ‘Cathedral Centre’ providing much-needed gathering spaces, offices and amenities. Both are designed to incorporate glass and timber textures to promote light and create a visual connection to the Square.
The Cathedral will have more flexibility in how it functions, due to planned enhancements internally and from the new supporting buildings.
“This is an investment in the future of the central city, Christchurch and Canterbury. The Anglican Cathedral is an iconic building at the heart of the city and the seat of our Anglican faith" says Anglican Bishop of Christchurch, Rt Rev’d Dr Peter Carrell.
“The Cathedral, through this Concept Design, will look very similar, retaining many heritage features, is more welcoming and have improved flexibility for worship and events, supported by improved acoustics, and a refurbished and better situated organ. I’m excited by the unfurling fern fronds expressed in the paving outside the Cathedral that extends welcome to all, as the fronds symbolise peacefulness of intent.”
Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Limited (CCRL) says the vastly improved aesthetics and landscaping of the overall Quarter will be a point of pride for the city and a revitalised New Zealand attraction.