Destinations, Landscape Architecture, New Zealand

Blueprints for Christchurch: Post-Quake Construction

July 30, 2012

Speaking of being on a landscape architecture kick

This morning, I’m sitting in my makeshift office on site at Carmel by the Sea, working on a master plan for the 58 year old holiday and conference center on the shores of the Indian Ocean in South Africa. (No, you haven’t missed anything. The blog is country or two backlogged: I have stores from Lebanon to share before shifting hemispheres again…)

But I was too giddy to resist sharing today’s landscape architecture thrill: recently released blueprints for redevelopment of the Christchurch Central Business District in New Zealand.

CG animation of Christchurch, New Zealand produced by Animation Research Ltd. for CERA (the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority), CCDU (the Christchurch Central Development Unit), the Christchurch City Council and Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu.

Eight years ago, I moved to Christchurch, New Zealand for five months. The short season was long enough to forever change me. I fell head over heels for the country and its people.

When the 2010 and 2011 earthquakes shook the city to the core, I cried from thousands of miles away. When my friends at Every Nation took the opportunity to rally and reach out to the city in practical ways, I cheered and wished I could’ve been there to join them. (See Ps. B’s video update from the months after the February 22nd quake.) Last November, Ps. B came to visit us in Portland, bringing stories of struggles and resilience from Christchurch.

Since September 2010, the city has experienced over 10,553 rattles, jolts, aftershocks, and full-on quakes. Numbers are constantly updated on the Christchurch Quake Map.

Our plane touches down in New Zealand on December 2nd.

I can’t wait to reunite with the city this year, and I can’t wait to someday in the future see blueprints for Christchurch come to full fruition.

Until then, I hold my breath in hope alongside my friends in NZ. You are such a brave bunch. May the city rise again, may the horizon hold blessings, and may your perseverance be rewarded…

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2 Comments

  • Reply Jennifer July 31, 2012 at 2:25 am

    I am sure it will be both heart warming and heart wrenching to see the re-building in person when you finally make it back to New Zealand.

    • Reply Bethany ~ twoOregonians August 1, 2012 at 9:05 pm

      Indeed. Sad to know that so much of the city that I remember is simply gone. The rebuilding efforts will take a lifetime and more, most likely. The fortitude of the community is truly inspiring to me. I’ll be so thankful to see friends again and to visit Hagley Park and to stand in the city and see the Southern Alps on the horizon… Oh, just thinking about it makes my heart beat a little faster!

    What say you?