Central city  |  21 Jul 2022

The next phase of a project to make Whiti-reia Cathedral Square a safer and more enjoyable place for residents and visitors alike is under way.

Contractors have begun working in the area of the Square by the historic Post Office building.

They are going to be re-levelling the ground, re-laying the paving, installing additional lighting and introducing landscaping to soften the environment.

The temporary toilet block will also be relocated to a paved area outside the new convention centre, Te Pae. This will happen towards the end of August or in early September.

“Cathedral Square is one of Christchurch’s most important public spaces and we are working in stages to improve its appearance and make it a more enjoyable place for people to spend time,’’ says Jane Davis, General Manager of Infrastructure and Regulatory Services at Christchurch City Council.

“Private property developers have invested significantly in the buildings surrounding the Square and we now have Te Pae open. It is important that we support the investment in this area by making sure the Square itself is an attractive, safe space for people.

“We have already completed landscaping and paving work directly in front of the Spark building and to the west of the Distinction Christchurch hotel. Now, our contractors are focusing on the area by the old Post Office building.

“The next area we will tackle is by the OGB and the Distinction Christchurch Hotel. We have held off doing any work in this area while the hotel was used as a Managed Isolation and Quarantine Facility, but we want to progress the work now.

“We are working closely with OGB and the Distinction Christchurch Hotel to determine a construction schedule that allows them to continue operating through the busy spring and summer period,’’ Ms Davis says.

As part of the Cathedral Square work, the security camera network in the area will be upgraded.

Later this year the restored Citizens’ War Memorial will also be returned to the Square.

It was removed from its original site, next to Christ Church Cathedral, in April 2021.

Work to reconstruct it on a new site, near where the old Police Kiosk stood, is progressing well with scaffolding and plastic wrap now in place. The concrete platform and plinth that make up the base of the memorial are complete. The stonemasons are on site and stonework is underway.

Work to repair the bronze figures and prepare the stone for reinstatement is continuing off-site, in parallel with the work on the base.

The Council is aiming to have the Citizens’ War Memorial revealed in its new home in time for Armistice Day commemorations.