Monday, January 2, 2012

Liquifactioned Red Zone: Waitaki St, Mitcham Pl, Bexley Rd, Pages Rd, Pratt St

Tues 03.01.12. I saw serial, quake trashed Bexley on the afternoon of the the 7.1 mag, 4 Sept 2010 quake & wandered Bexley after the 6.3 mag, 13 June 2011 quake. Waitaki St was flooded by the Sept 4 quake & when I saw Waitaki St after June 13 quake, it was part flooded. Reason for quake flooding & liquefaction - too close to Avon River.

Whether the word liquefaction was used as a process, or a product, mud; or a verb, or a noun, all CERA red zoned areas in suburbs or CBD were liquefucked. Hundreds of thousands of tons of mud were shoved up during quakes, leaving voids under buildings & causing massive damage to foundations & rot to floor joists & floor boards. Never mind rising damp in buildings affected by liquefaction.

After CERA red zoned Bexley streets in Oct 2011 & after the 23.12.11 quake swarm, I wanted a closer look at red zoned Waitaki St, Mitcham Pl, Bexley Rd & Pages Rd, a circular walk - utter devastation. After the deadly 6.3 mag, 22 Feb 2011 quake, those roads & houses were trashed by liquefaction. Subsequent quakes messed them more.

Red zone = dead zone, mud zone.

The snag with red zoning & other land zoning was that no one was checking & moderating Tonkin & Taylor geotech engineers' slow work. That resulted in 1 000s of homeowners & business owners forced to accept their land decisions. CERA wasn't checking, Minister of quake recovery Brownlee wasn't checking & property owners had to just suck it up, like it or not!

That caused crazy anomalies like coastal Brooklands red zoned post Feb 22 & June 13 quakes, with many liveable, unbroken houses, yet coastal Parklands, closer to town, was green zoned with massive liquefactions post Feb 22 & June 13 quakes. Along came the 23.12.11 quake swarm: red zone Brooklands OK, green zone Parklands a muddy mess, again.

Zoning of Bexley & New Brighton streets I saw, according to CERA's Landcheck website:

Pages Rd - some red zone, some green zone.
Bexley Rd - some red zone, some green zone.
Waitaki St close to Avon River- red zone.
Mitcham Pl & side lanes very close to Avon River - red zone.
Pratt St - some red zone, some green zone.

CERA's zoning was mad. CERA insisted on rebuilding the red zone CBD, but displaced citizens from their homes in CERA's residential red zones.

Usually the closer one went to a river, the more red zoning. Christchurch CBD, close to Avon River, with massive quake & liquefaction damage, was in a red zone cordon, public banned for 11 months so far, yet CBD land still wasn't zoned properly by CERA & Tonkin & Taylor.

How did Tonkin & Taylor & CERA justify rebuilding the red zone CBD on top of the CBD Fault, after the CBD was as badly liquefactioned as many red zoned riverside suburbs?

Adjacent red zone / green zone homes were anomalous, causing home owner pain. Green zone home owners had to fix their quake broken properties, having lost equity due to quakes. Red zone home owners next door could take govt and / or insurance payouts, leave & start afresh. Green zoners in the same muddy streets as red zoners had to grin & bear it.

Who was checking Tonkin & Taylor, govt / CERA appointed geotech engineers? Never mind that white zone & orange zone properties still waited tardy land reports after many months.

What I saw in Bexley, especially after the 23.12.11 quake swarm, as many houses were abandoned, reminded me of SA apartheid townships, utter degradation: rubbish housing, shit in streets; trashed streets; muddy streets; minimal, poorly serviced infrastructure; overgrown gardens.

Sun 01.01.12. New Years Day, the quake swarm continued in Pegasus Bay, with Geonet recording 3 quakes, magnitudes: 3.3; 3.5; 4.0.

Mon Jan 2. Geonet recorded 19 quakes, magnitudes: 5.1; 4.3; 3.5; 3.8; 5.5; 4.2; 4.1; 4.1; 3.9; 3.8; 4.1; 3.7; 3.7; 3.9; 3.3; 3.5; 3.6; 4.8; 3.8. Tues Jan 3, The Press reported 21 quakes on Monday. Take your pick.

I didn't feel most of the Monday quakes, Pegasus Bay epicentres east, or north-east of Christchurch, but felt some of the 4-5 mags. Some I didn't feel, depending where I was. If I was wandering around, or driving my car, I rarely felt 4 mag quakes. If I was seated at home I felt them, as a slight rumbling or trembling. Rattly, grumbling 5 mags yes! A couple of times that Monday Leah asked, "Did you feel that?"

"No," I replied. Adapting to quakes?

Tues 03.01.12. I parked my car, corner Pages Rd / Waitaki St. Pages Rd from Pages Rd Bridge over Avon River to Anzac Dr was disintegrating, as it was in the red zone, dead zone, mud zone.

Images, quake damaged Pages Rd & Waitaki St:


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned cnr Pages Rd / Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned house, cnr Pages Rd / Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


Bexley degradation was worse than what I saw post June 13 quake. Liquefaction mud was left lying around & little was done by Council, or remaining home owners, to keep up pre quake, Garden City hype. So far CERA had condemned 6 500 Canterbury, red zone houses to demolishers.


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned house, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm



03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefaction mud, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


Most Bexley, quake broken houses I saw that Tuesday morning were abandoned, with muddy, overgrown gardens, pavements & verges. A few houses were still inhabited. A year ago, before serial quake flooding & liquefaction, the area was a bustling community.

Quake damage was similar to that I'd seen in other Christchurch suburbs: muddy, cracked roads & driveways; blue, plastic, water pipes along muddy pavements, part buried in mud; brown sewage in road puddles; abandoned furniture in gardens & streets; loose roof tarps; orange plastic road cones, scattered everywhere; leaning power poles; power lines dangerously hanging; skewed letterboxes & plastic sewage tanks; tilted, abandoned houses & garages sinking into mud.

Council black rubbish bins were scattered everywhere, with red, yellow, green lids. As if former inhabitants of ghost houses wanted witnesses to know their houses were quake trashed.

Meanwhile mayor Parker jabbered on TV that the Feb 22 quake was the energy equivalent of 80 Hiroshima bombs... That tourists were coming to Christchurch, thrilled to experience aftershocks... Parker down played quake survivor fears of the ongoing Pegasus Bay quake swarm.

During the 23.12.11 quake swarm, while Parker was holidaying in Taupo, I was in fear of my life, 4 times, in Peterborough St Council library. And I don't scare easily.

Never mind the tsunami threat in Pegasus Bay. Why was Civil Defence, Council & CERA so silent? Never mind insulting families of 185 dead. Public opinion was turning against Parker & his clown Council.


03.01.12. Serial quake trashed house, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm



03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


Waitaki St: A junk-mailer dodged liquefaction mud, like me, passing ghost houses & mailing junk in some living letterboxes.


03.01.12. Serial quake damaged housing, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm






Muddy Mitcham Pl: I greeted two old ladies, walking their dogs. Most of Mitcham Pl & side lanes was abandoned. At the end of Mitcham Pl, I stood on Avon River stop bank, raised after the Feb 22 quake. Subsequent quakes had slumped the stop bank Mitcham Pl side & Avon River side - lengthy cracks, more than, a metre deep. Slumping was due to lateral spreading.

Images, quake damaged Mitchem Pl:


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Mitcham Pl, post 23.12.11 quake swarm






03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Sopley Ln, off Mitcham Pl, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quake damaged, Avon River stop bank, end of Mitcham Pl, post 23.12.11 quake swarm





03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned house, Mitcham Pl, post 23.12.11 quake swarm



03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Fordingbridge Ln, off Mitcham Pl, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Mitcham Pl, post 23.12.11 quake swarm




Returning to Waitaki St, I wandered along more muddy mayhem to Bexley Rd junction.

Images, quake damaged Waitaki St:


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactiond house, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm



03.01.12. Serial quake tilted, plastic, sewage tank, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned house, Waitaki St, post 23.12.11 quake swarm













Waitaki St / Bexley Rd junction: A quake tilted house I'd seen post June 13 quake was gone, demolished. The rest of the junction was a muddy mess: ghost houses; piles of liquefaction mud; flood puddles with sewage water; silt everywhere; blue water pipe, drowned in sewage water; scattered road cones & a yellow, roadside pump.

Images, quake damaged Bexley Rd:


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned cnr Waitaki St / Bexley Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm



03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Bexley Rd view to Avon River stop bank. Seen from cnr Bexley Rd / Waitaki St, 23.12.11 quake swarm

Bexley Rd: I wandered muddy quake devastation, past ghost houses with overgrown gardens & verges to John Hinton Reserve on Avon River bank. When was Council & CERA going to cut all that long grass & fuel-for-fire shrubbery? Were they expecting arsonists to save them demolition costs?

Near Avon River raised stop bank stood several big, porous, plastic bags, filled with dry concrete mix, ready for Avon River bank breaching.


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Bexley Rd, on the way to Avon River, 23.12.11 quake swarm











End of Bexley Rd, by John Hinton Reserve: On Avon River stop bank, as usual I saw Bexley Rd was below Avon River level.


03.01.12. Avon River stop bank view of liquefactioned Bexley Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Porous, plastic bags, filled with dry concrete mix, ready for Avon River bank breaching, Bexley Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm

I turned back along Bexley Rd & walked its muddy length, past Waitaki St junction, past ghost houses & overgrown gardens to Pages Rd.


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Bexley Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm












































Corner Bexley Rd / Pages Rd: An Orion utility bldg was sunk more into liquefaction mud than I'd seen post June 13 quake. Liquefaction flooding water mark was just below a door handle. The utility bldg was later demolished.


03.01.12. Cnr Bexley Rd / Pages Rd, view to Anzac Dr, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Pages Rd view of serial quakes, liquefactioned Bexley Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, low hanging power lines, above liquefactioned Bexley Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Orion substation, cnr Bexley Rd / Pages Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm







Pages Rd: Ghost houses & pavements were mired in more liquefaction mud. Council wasn't bothering to dig out red zoned houses anymore. CERA demolishers waited.

Images, quake damaged Pages Rd:


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefactioned Pages Rd view to Pages Rd Bridge, 23.12.11 quake swarm



03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefaction trashed house, Pages Rd, between Bexley Rd & Waitaki St, 23.12.11 quake swarm





03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefaction trashed house, cnr Pages Rd / Waitaki St, 23.12.11 quake swarm


I drove across serial quake damaged Pages Rd Bridge & stopped along New Brighton Rd by Pratt St, as I wanted to see what had happened to red zone housing there.


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefaction trashed, cnr Pratt St & New Brighton Rd. Avon River stop bank beyond, 23.12.11 quake swarm

Images, quake damaged New Brighton Rd:


New Brighton Rd / Pratt St junction: Huge quake cracks & slumping on the post Feb 22 quake raised stop bank, on Avon River bank. Idiot engineers & workmen had covered a Pratt St drain pipe with stop bank shingle. Result: Quake sink hole over the drain outlet, broken drain pipe & quake slumping, riverside. Slumping was due to lateral spreading.


03.01.12. Serial quakes, cracked & slumped Avon River stop bank, 23.12.11 quake swarm. New Brighton Rd left. Avon River & Pages Rd Bridge right


03.01.12. Serial quakes, cracked, Avon River stop bank, 23.12.11 quakes swarm. New Brighton Rd right


03.01.12. New Brighton Rd, stop bank view of Avon River & serial quakes, raised stop  bank, 23.12.11 quake swarm

By a memorial tree on Avon Riverbank, a black marble memorial plaque read:

           PLANTED BY THE PUPILS OF
     NEW BRIGHTON DISTRICT SCHOOL
TO COMMEMORATE THE MARRIAGE OF
                     KING GEORGE V
                                 TO
                      QUEEN MARY
                                1911


03.01.12. Memorial plaque, King George V marriage to Queen Mary 1911, Avon River stop bank, New Brighton Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm


Memorial trees & memorial plaques in Christchurch (lots in Hagley Park & the CBD) lasted longer than quake ravaged housing, roads & river stop banks.

Corner Pratt St / New Brighton Rd: Quake trashed houses & liquefactioned, overgrown gardens.

Images, quake damaged Pratt St:


03.01.12. Serial quakes, trashed house, cnr Pratt St / New Brighton Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm



Pratt St: Serial quake trashed. Sewage stench & messy road surface from broken, leaky sewage pipes. Liquefaction mud on road, pavements & in gardens. The road was shingle repaired, but in bad condition. Blue water pipes on pavements. Road workers signs & equipment were scattered around. There were quake tilted, ghost houses & garages, with overgrown gardens. Some houses were inhabited.


03.01.12. Liquefactioned pavement, Pratt St, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Sewage leak across liquefaction trashed Pratt St, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Serial quakes, liquefaction damaged house, Pratt St, 23.12.11 quake swarm


03.01.12. Blue, plastic water pipe, liquefaction damaged Pratt St, 23.12.11 quake swarm


Corner Pratt St / Keyes Rd: ANNABELS EDUCARE bldg was about 100 metres from sewage leaking across Pratt St.


03.01.12. Signs, cnr Pratt St / Keyes Rd, 23.12.11 quake swarm


As my camera battery expired at the end of Pratt St, I would have to see Baker St & Sinclair St another day.

Coda: Nov 2013. Two years later, many of the liquefucked, red zone houses I saw were demolished by CERA.

Content & pics Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.

See Tonkin & Taylor Canterbury Land Information.

1 comment:

  1. Responded to an email inquiring about Bexley homeowners.

    ReplyDelete