Demolition starts on community centre

Dangerous South Brighton centre coming down

LOIS CAIRNS
Last updated 16:05 21/01/2013
south brighton landscape
IAIN MCGREGOR/FAIRFAX NZ

COMING DOWN: The roof of the South New Brighton Community Centre is stripped back.

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Work has begun on demolishing the South New Brighton Community Centre in Beatty St.

The centre has been closed since the February 2011 earthquake, and engineering inspections have revealed it is too badly damaged to be repaired.

Approval to demolish the building was given by the Chrsitchurch City Council last month after the receipt of a notice of demolition from the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority, which considered parts of the building to be dangerous.

Council community services general manager Michael Aitken said contractors began demolishing the building today. 

The loss of the community centre would be keenly felt by the local community, but it was too damaged to retain, he said.

''Coming up with a long-term solution for the community centre is certainly important to the council, and this was recognised when it last year named the facility as one of its priority projects,'' Aitken said.

''It's difficult for residents to see the building coming down, but we're pleased to be able to offer some clarity about the building's future. We will continue to update residents as more information comes to hand.''

Options for the site were continuing to be explored, but rebuilding on the same site might be complex and expensive as it was technical category 3 land, he said.

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