Historic Chch building saved at 11th hour
One of Christchurch's most iconic pieces of heritage looks set to be saved.
Cranmer Courts unit owners have voted unanimously to accept an offer from across the Tasman to purchase the entire site - which includes saving the historic facade.
The demolition contract has been subsequently cancelled.
The Cranmer Courts body corporate received a proposal to buy the entire site, including the nine occupied town houses, through Risk Worldwide, an international disaster insurance recovery firm which is based in Australia. Demolition had already started but was halted while discussions were held.
Annabel Sheppard, the lawyer acting for the body corporate, said the last of the owners of the 33 units signed their agreement to sell on Saturday morning.
The Press understands the offer was for about $7 million, on top of the $19m already secured through insurance.
Sheppard said the agreement was conditional on the purchaser doing "due diligence", and final confirmation was not expected for a few weeks.
She did not know the purchasers' long-term plans for the site but understood they wished to retain the stone facade on the corner of Kilmore and Montreal streets.
There was "a mix of emotion" among the unit owners.
"It was a difficult process as they had a relatively short period to make a major decision," she said.
"Most people are pleased to have an opportunity to proceed with their future."
Sheppard said there had been consultation with the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority to "get to this point".
The heritage-listed building was red-stickered after the February 2011 earthquake and residents spent $1m stabilising it.
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