Precarious hilltop houses cleared

JOB DONE: Digger driver Terry O’Neill, left, surveys the remains of a demolished red-zone house on Clifton Hill.
JOB DONE: Digger driver Terry O’Neill, left, surveys the remains of a demolished red-zone house on Clifton Hill.

Some of Christchurch's more complex hilltop demolitions have been completed.

Houses on Clifton Hill, above Sumner, were left in precarious positions after the February 2011 earthquake.

Insurer Southern Response, the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera) and Arrow International collaborated on the tricky demolition process.

JOB DONE: Digger driver Terry O’Neill, left, surveys the remains of a demolished red-zone house on Clifton Hill.
JOB DONE: Digger driver Terry O’Neill, left, surveys the remains of a demolished red-zone house on Clifton Hill.

Work on the complex demolitions began on May 5 and by Wednesday afternoon all the properties had been cleared of houses, foundations and some retaining walls.

The properties will now be handed over to Cera for more geotechnical and engineering assessments. Further retaining walls could be removed.

The demolished properties will now allow access to more "challenging" properties closer to the cliff edge.

The Press