Rebuilding options for Christchurch Cathedral unveiled
A STRAW poll of delegates to the 13 April 2013 meeting of Christchurch diocesan Synod has voted to support a proposal to rebuild the city’s earthquake ravaged Cathedral using a contemporary design.
Last week the Diocese of Christchurch and its Church Property Tr ustees unveiled three designs: a full restoration of the original Nineteenth century Gothic cathedral, rebuilding the Cathedral according to its original specifications but using modern construction materials, or a contemporary new design.
A show of hands from the approximately 200 members of the synod presence showed overwhelming support for the contemporary design due to its cheaper cost, modern look, and the symbolism of a re-born diocese.
The diocese reports the “praying hands” style Cathedral would feature a restored rose window on the western glass wall, and a glass and steel bell tower. Estimated to cost between NZ $56 million to NZ $74 million the rebuilding project is expected to take from 5 to 10 years. Earthquake insurance payments will contribute NZ $30 million towards the cost of rebuilding.
Christchurch’s Church Property Tr ustees will make a final decision as to the form the new Cathedral will take. It has launched a website www.cathedralconversations.org.nz to solicit feedback from the community on its wishes as well. A series of public forums led by Bishop Victoria Matthews is scheduled for the coming weeks to present options to the wider community. Comments posted at the website indicated majority of the public like the contemporary design also.