Tuesday, May 28, 2013

CERA, Council & MOE Fails, Christchurch Quakes

Wed 29.05.13. Post 04.09.10 quake, Canterbury Cheesemongers moved from quake trashed premises in Salisbury St to Worcester Blvd near the Arts Centre. Canterbury Cheesemongers trade was slow, as tourists weren't attracted to Worcester Blvd anymore. Little went on due to CERA's lengthy occupation of Christchurch CBD. Christchurch Art Gallery was closed for repairs. Instead of the pre quakes craft market, there were a few garages selling trinkets. The Arts Centre was closed for slow repairs.

Images, quake damaged Worcester Blvd:

01.06.13. Cheesemongers left, cnr Montreal St / Worcester Blvd, Christchurch Art Gallery right, closed for repairs


Post quake Christchurch was NZ govt's bureaucrats' nest, some elected, most appointed, paid mega bucks for Christchurch's recovery - CERA, CCDU, SCIRT, Council, MOE bureaucrats.

01.06.13. Christchurch Art Gallery, cnr Montreal St / Worcester Blvd, closed for repairs

01.06.13. CERA Cordon Pass Office, Worcester Blvd, opp Council bldg

Squeaking about quakes recently, mayor Parker, CERA boss Sutton & CCDU boss Isaacs flew overseas. Weekends, town clerk Marryatt scurried to his Hamilton nest. SCIRT boss nested in Auckland & scurried to Christchurch for SCIRT dealings.

PM Key grew up in Christchurch & made his wealth in London investment banking before returning to NZ. He often flew overseas & down to Christchurch for photo ops. Quake recovery minister Brownlee bossed CERA. Brownlee's constituency was Ilam, including our Burnside home. In the years we'd lived in Burnside, we'd never seen Brownlee in Ilam. Like PM Key, Brownlee wafted to Christchurch for photo ops, where they dressed up in hard hats & Hi Vis vests.

I spend lots of time in Christchurch quake ruined CBD. Early mornings I drove Luke to work at Douglas Furniture, Horatio St, off Antigua St, near the new temporary cop shop & Christchurch Hospital. Sometimes I picked Luke up again in the late afternoons, if weather was foul, or for other reasons. Otherwise Luke bussed home to Burnside.

Amongst neighbouring bldgs, Douglas Furniture was slated for demolition, for NZ Govt's / CERA's Blueprint Metro Sports Facility. But Metro Sports Facility would take years to be built. Fail by CERA & CCDU.

I shopped at Moorhouse Ave Pak 'n Save at least once a week & drove across the CBD several times a week for various reasons, visiting libraries, going to New Brighton, or seeing Leah at her London St School. I also intermittently walked the red zone cordon for closer looks. So I saw lots of CERA goings on, or zilch goings on, in the CBD & blogged what I saw, or didn't see.

Didn't see was the operative phrase for CERA & CCDU. Nothing was happening. Zilch. CCDU was in terminal stall, 1 000 days post 04.09.10 quake. With its NZDF checkpointed cordons, CERA strangled business out of the CBD & business was reluctant to return. Business man Gough planned to build The Terrace on Oxford Tce near Restart Cashel Mall. Other business men just squabbled about what to build and where around Restart Cashel Mall.

2015-16: BNZ Centre & ANZ Centre were built on Cashel Mall, intersected by Colombo St.

Last year amidst much NZ govt fanfare, CERA's CCDU Blueprint was announced on 30.07.12. So far, it was just that, a plan with few bldg constructions going on. CCDU's anchor projects were found on CCDU's website. CCDU's propaganda boards still hung on the cordon fence at Cathedral Sq NZDF checkpoint, Colombo St, for tourists to gawk at.

Walking & driving around the CBD showed that CERA & CCDU did next to nothing - 3 bldg sites surrounded by NZDF checkpoints, cordon fences, demolition sites & abandoned bldgs. 

Following CCDU's propaganda boards at Cathedral Sq NZDF checkpoint:

THE SQUARE. Red zone cordoned, Christchurch Cathedral ruin. Novotel was being repaired. Zilch going on amidst abandoned bldgs & demolition sites behind red zone cordon fences. CERA Fail.

Images, quake damaged Gloucester St:

01.06.13. Giant seat, Gloucester St. Demolition sites behind, Isaac Theatre Royal restoration right

01.06.13. Gloucester St view of quake ruined Christchurch Cathedral. Novotel repairs left. Abandoned Camelot Hotel right awaited demolition for NZ govt's / CCDU's Blueprint Convention Centre

STADIUM between Barbadoes St & Madras St. Zilch going on behind cordon fences. Just Turners & Growers site amidst demolition sites & abandoned bldgs. Cardboard Cathedral construction by the Anglican diocese, Latimer Sq. CERA Fail.

THE FRAME. E Frame between Manchester St & Madras St. Zilch going on behind cordon fences, amidst demolition sites & abandoned bldgs. S Frame between Tuam St & St Asaph St. I drove Tuam St daily & searched in vain for CCDU activity. Quake survivor car dealers, like Archibalds, VW, Renault, Lexus still traded near the hospital. The rest, zilch happening amidst cordon fences, demolition sites & abandoned bldgs. CERA fail.

By June 2016, Christchurch Hospital was repaired & a new geriatrics hospital was built at Burwood.

Council fail: AVON RIVER PRECINCT, N Frame, Oxford Tce. Zilch. Just fence cordons & abandoned bldgs, like Centennial Pool, ACC & Luneys awaiting demolitions for NZ govt's / CERA's Blueprint Margaret Mahy Family Playground (built by 2016).

WATERMARK by Antigua Boatsheds: Council City Care workers dug by Cambridge Tce & Montreal St Bridge, busy work, removing concrete blocks from Avon River, shuffling riverside lamp poles & benches, constructing a riverside boardwalk, revamping paths & making a pavement side concrete wall for gawkers & Avon River ducks. A wall for taggers. Money spent on revamping riverside paths which were fine before the WATERMARK revamp. Council fail.

Images, quake damaged Cambridge Tce:

29.05.13. Oxford Tce view of Watermark by Antigua Boatsheds, Avon River bank revamp, Cambridge Tce

29.05.13. Watermark, Avon River bank revamp, Cambridge Tce

More Council fails: Thurs 30.05.13. The Press letter to the editor showed a citizen's anger, seeing so much incompetence & waste by pre quakes & post quakes Council:

Where's our apology?

How dare the Christchurch City Council compensate for "hurt and humiliation" caused to former employees, while the Mayor steadfastly refuses to apologise to those of us who were crushed by the masonry buildings that those self-same employees failed to fence off or reinforce in any way?

I appreciate that 2010-2012 would have been extraordinarily difficult years to work at the council. But council staff knew full well the facade that collapsed onto the No 3 bus, killing 12, was fully detached and leaning out over Colombo St. Yet council staff didn't even put up a fence. The risk was known and the deaths and injuries were entirely preventable.

Now council apologises to and compensates themselves, but not those who were killed and injured by their failure to act. The staff get compensated. Their victims do not. 

Why has the council never apologised to the victims of the unreinforced (and sometimes unfenced) brick buildings? What would it hurt for the Mayor to just say he's sorry? The council compensated staff for "hurt and humiliation" during the earthquakes and Royal Commission investigations. Does the Mayor think there's no "hurt and humiliation" in getting crushed by a building?

The mayor apologised to the CTV victims. Why not us?

Ann Brower

Ann Brower was crushed & trapped in the No 3 bus. She was badly injured & the only survivor. Four more people were killed by falling masonry in the Colombo St / Mollett St / Tuam St vicinity, totalling 16, the third most fatal site after the CTV & PGC collapses. Those 2 modern bldgs were exceptions to the 100s of unreinforced masonry bldgs which collapsed in the 04.09.10, 26.12.10 & 22.02.11 quakes. Unsecured parapets, chimneys, gables, brick walls & facades collapsed & crashed through neighbouring bldgs, or onto pavements, alleys, roads, gardens or driveways. Council had more than enough time to cordon dangerous bldgs post 04.09.10 quake.

Further insults to the quake dead & injured - For the last 2 year after demolitions, those Colombo St sites near Mollett St were a weedy mess. Many people passed the sites daily, as the temporary bus exchange was off Colombo St, between Tuam St & Lichfield St. .

CCDU fail: JUSTICE & EMERGENCY SERVICES precinct was supposed to be on the temporary bus exchange site, corner Colombo St / Tuam St - Zilch was happening amidst demolition sites & abandoned bldgs.

NZ govt's / CERA's Blueprint Justice & Emergency Services precinct was built 2015-16,

Temporary cop shop was besieged by Antigua St SCIRT cones & slow salvage / demolition of Canterbury Brewery. Cop cars battled to get out of Antigua St exit due to SCIRT road obstructions. Yesterday afternoon on my way to pick up Luke, a cop car, siren blaring, waited for an obstructing truck at Antigua St / Tuam St crossing, blocked by SCIRT cones. SCIRT perennial fail - obstructing road cones & slow infrastructure repairs,

Like neighbouring bldgs, Canterbury Brewery was demolished for NZ govt's / CERA's Blueprint Metro Sports Facility.

Images, quake damaged Riccarton Ave:

29.05.13. Frosty morning, Avon River, Riccarton Ave

HEALTH PRECINCT, Riccarton Ave. Zilch new construction sites. Tawdry new, double storey, Hagley Outpatients bldg, looked like a glorified prefab, on the old Nurses Hostel site by Christchurch Hospital.

29.05.13. Christchurch Hospital entrance, Riccarton Ave

29.05.13. Hagley Outpatients built on demolished Nurses Hostel site, Christchurch Hospital, Riccarton Ave

29.05.13. Christchurch Women's Hospital, Riccarton Ave

29.05.13. Christchurch Hospital, Riccarton Ave. 8 green, plastic sewage tanks, in situ since the 22.02.11 quake

METRO SPORTS FACILITY including pool, a massive area between Moorhouse Ave & Tuam St - bits of Moorhouse Ave, Antigua St, Stewart St, Horatio St, Balfour Tce, St Asaph St & Tuam St. Luke's work premises were on Balfour Tce & Horatio St & Luke's boss said it would be a year before their new Hornby factory was completed. Go figure how long it would take for CCDU to pay peanuts for 47 properties for the Metro Sports Facility. (CERA Notice of intention to take land for the Metro Sports Facility). All those bldgs had to be demolished, including Canterbury Brewery established 1854, before any construction of the Metro Sports Facility. CERA fail.

Images, quake damaged Antigua St:

29.05.13. Canterbury Brewery est 1854, awaited demolition for NZ govt's / CERA's Blueprint Metro Sports Facility, cnr Antigua St / Tuam St

29.05.13. Post quake, relocated, Central Police car park, Antigua St

29.05.13. Corys with quake braced window, Antigua St

Images, quake damaged Balfour Tce:

29.05.13. Metro The Art Of Floors, cnr Antigua St / Balfour Tce

29.05.13. Mico, cnr Antigua St / Balfour Tce

29.05.13. Hazard boards on back fence, Canterbury Brewery, Balfour Tce 

29.05.13. Abandoned business & USAR / TF graffiti, Balfour Tce

29.05.13. Douglas Furniture Ltd, Balfour Tce

29.05.13. Showbiz, Balfour Tce

29.05.13. Balfour Tce east view

29.05.13. Post quake demolition site between Balfour Tce & Horatio St

29.05.13. Demolition site junk & USAR / TF graffiti, Balfour Tce end

29.05.13. Car dealer, cnr Stewart St / Moorhouse Ave

Bldgs in Antigua St, Balfour Tce & Horatio St I passed daily became dilapidated. Pointless doing post quake repairs as they were slated for CCDUs' Blueprint takings. One quake trashed bldg down the road from Luke's work was horizontally bent like an archer's bow. So much for Occupational Safety & Health.

Images, quake damaged Horatio St:

29.05.13. Tectra, cnr Stewart St / Horatio St

29.05.13. Demolition site & cordoned, abandoned business, Horatio St

29.05.13. Graffito & USAR / TF graffiti, abandoned business, Horatio St

29.05.13. Relocation notice & abandoned business, Horatio St

29.05.13. Orix Vehicle Sales, Horatio St

29.05.13. Douglas Furniture Ltd, Horatio St

29.05.13. Horatio St demolition sites to Moorhouse Ave & USAR / TF graffiti

29.05.13. Horatio St west view

29.05.13. Horatio St demolition sites / car park to Moorhouse Ave. Snowy Port Hills beyond

29.05.13. Montreux, cnr Horatio St / Antigua St

29.05.13. Mico, cnr Horatio St / Antigua St

Never mind  CCDU's takings & demolishings of more CBD properties for CCDUs "recovery" schemes, all paid for by NZ taxpayers. NZ National govt robbed NZ taxpayers & Christchurch businesses to pay for its "recovery" schemes.

PERFORMING ARTS PRECINCT, Gloucester St. Zilch. Just red zone cordon fences, demolition sites & abandoned bldgs. CERA fail.

CONVENTION CENTRE, between Victoria Sq & Cathedral Sq. Zilch. Just red zone cordon fences, demolition sites & abandoned bldgs. Old Central Library & Chancery Arcade were abandoned, awaiting demolitions for NZ Govt's / CCDU's Blueprint Convention Centre. CERA fail.

CENTRAL LIBRARY, Gloucester St. Zilch. Abandoned Camelot Hotel awaited demolition for Central Library rebuild. CERA / Council fail.

NGAI TAHU CULTURAL CENTRE: Crowne Plaza Hotel demolition site, where the present makeshift Pallet Pavilion stood, next to abandoned, cordoned Town Hall. Zilch. Never mind other cultures in Christchurch. Imagine fat Maori men & women cavorting in fake costumes & fake tattoos, cajoling tourists to Victoria Sq. CERA fail.

BUS EXCHANGE, Tuam St. Zilch. Abandoned, old Council bldg behind red zone cordon fences, awaited demolition for the new Bus Exchange. Temporary Bus Exchange worked for over a year by Tuam St / Colombo St crossing.

The first phase of the new Bus Exchange was completed in May 2015.

So far, as no CCDU anchor projects were anywhere near happening, CERA / CCDU bureaucrats perpetrated a land grab in the CBD using taxpayers' money to cheaply buy CBD properties for anchor projects. Last year Brownlee said there was no housing crisis in Christchurch, but now Housing NZ minister Smith boasted about building a new state house in Christchurch every working day over the next 2 years. State interference in the housing market. CCDU offered peanuts for CBD properties, while threatening compulsory acquisition for anchor projects. CCDU / CERA fail..

Given the N, E & S Frame land bordering CCDU's core CBD, which the National govt wanted to buy, how would the Frames evolve & anchor projects evolve?

MOE Fails: 29.05.13, MOE minister Parata announced closures & mergers of several Christchurch schools. MOE's announcements last year were a fail, causing public protests & anguish for school communities.

Of the many affected schools the following were dear to us:

Manning Intermediate would merge with Hillmorton HS: 11 year olds merging with 18 year olds in the same school. MOE fail, despite close proximity of both schools. Why not carry on as before as separate schools?

Branston Intermediate & Phillipstown School were both closed, the latter merging with Woolston School. Branston Intermediate was undamaged by quakes. From Oaklands School, once a week our sons had bussed to Branston Intermediate, where their subsequent technology careers were stimulated. MOE fail, as both schools served many other schools with technology teaching. As Leah's school kids bussed to Phillipstown School for technology, Leah wondered where her kids would do technology, if at all?

Richmond School, near Leah's school & Kendal School near our home were both closed. Expected as they had low rolls.

No merging of South New Brighton School with Central New Brighton School. MOE got the message that a merge would've been disastrous should a tsunami hit quake sunk Southshore Spit.

SCIRT fail: Why did SCIRT continue digging up Estuary Rd outside South New Brighton School for so many months?

MOE proposed a new triple merge of Central New Brighton, North New Brighton & Freeville schools. MOE originally wanted 2 New Brighton schools closed & with the new triple merge proposal, it would still get 2 NB schools closed.

Merging meant closing schools. Grand total of schools closed after all the mergings & closures, including the Aranui super school - 15 closed schools. That was mega school property, closed. PM Key would have more assets to sell.

Never mind sacked school staff & 1 000s of kids' & parents' lives disrupted.

Parata's statements published in The Press 30.05.13 were sententious fails. Examples:

"We have a chance to build brighter, more modern schools in better locations, which will ensure all children have access to good, quality education within a close distance to where they live." BS & insulting to teachers & parents who'd have to transport or walk kids longer distances to merged schools.

"Investing in the future

The government is investing $1 billion into restoring and renewing the education sector in greater Christchurch over 10 years, including building or rebuilding 16 schools. This will provide greater Christchurch with one of the best most modern networks in the country, which will serve communities for many years to come. It will help each child to get a great education."

BS & more insults to teachers. Buildings didn't make quality education. Teachers did. There was no word about what the new schools would be, nor where, nor that investments on sales of 15 closed schools would easily cover $1 billion.  

Meanwhile EQC Truths blogger Marc Krieger outed himself while overseas, after EQC found out who he was, a 9 month's wonder at EQC's Wellington office. EQC Truths blogger threatened to fight whatever legal action EQC scratched up. He also challenged EQC boss Simpson & CERA minister Brownlee to a debate. Like his previous debate challenges to Simpson, no takers.

On his return to NZ, EQC Truths blogger wanted to set up a business helping EQC claimants.

CERA was smug about its slow "recovery" whereas house repairs & rebuilds & CBD rebuild projects & SCIRT pipe, road & bridge repairs stretched years into the future. Meanwhile citizens still endured slum conditions in quake trashed houses, into their third post quake winter, while EQC & insurers delayed...

Coda: Thursday, 11.06.15, two years later. Very little change in CERA's CBD: more demolition sites, a half built, new Bus Exchange between Lichfield St & Tuam St & the steel skeleton of the new Justice & Emergency Services precinct. But no more progress on any other Blueprint anchor project. CERA Fail.

Today the newly elected Council under new mayor Dalziel confirmed restoration of the old Town Hall, Kilmore St. New Council fail, as the former maligned Council, most of whom were booted out at the last election, made exactly the same Town Hall restoration decision two years ago in 2013. Council marked time, waiting for meddlesome CERA to leave Christchurch in 2016 before more Blueprint CBD rebuild happened.

Content & pics Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.

See No fear in taking on officialdom (The Press / Stuff Co).

See 19 schools hear their fate (The Press / Stuff Co). 

See Landowner says take the money (The Press / Stuff Co).

See $231m on land for anchor projects (The Press / Stuff Co).

See 700 new state homes for Christchurch (The Press / Stuff Co).

See How far have we come since Sept 2010 (The Press / Stuff Co).

See Marryatt heading for showdown on pay rise (The Press / Stuff Co).

See Marryatt wants insurance briefing closed (The Press / Stuff Co).

See Live stream Christchurch City Council decide on Town Hall (The Press / Stuff Co).