Christ Church Cathedral announcement expected in weeks

Christ Church Cathedral, seen here from above in February, has been sitting empty for more than five years with no clear ...
IAIN MCGREGOR/FAIRFAX NZ

Christ Church Cathedral, seen here from above in February, has been sitting empty for more than five years with no clear decision on its future.

Greater detail on how the Government plans to break deadlock over the Christ Church Cathedral is expected to be announced within weeks.

The Anglican cathedral has been sitting damaged in Christchurch's city centre for more than five years, with no clear decision on its possible fate. 

The Government last year appointed mediator Miram Dean, QC, in an attempt to break deadlock over the building. Anglican leaders had decided to demolish the cathedral and replace it with a modern building, but those plans were caught up in legal challenges.

Church leaders and the Government announced in December that reinstating the cathedral was being considered.

READ MORE:
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The Great Christchurch Buildings Trust, which has been campaigning to restore the cathedral, was also involved in the Government process.

Trust co-chairman Philip Burdon said a Government announcement on the cathedral was expected soon.

"We expect an announcement before the end of the month. It will either be this week or next week. It is being run by the Government. They will make the announcement."

A spokeswoman for the Anglican diocese declined to comment.

"There is nothing to report at this stage, but we will be sure to be in touch when we have an update," she said.

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Dean's report on the cathedral was published in December and outlined two options – reinstatement at a cost of $105 million or a modern rebuild for $66m.

Anglican leaders claim the two aftershocks in February caused additional damage to the cathedral, including widening cracks, further collapse of the west wall and damage to the pulpit from fallen rubble.

"These events are not expected to affect ongoing discussions with the Government regarding addressing the safety and cost issues associated with reinstating Christ Church Cathedral," a spokeswoman said.

 - Stuff

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