Bloomberg News

Christchurch Cathedral to Be Demolished After Quake

March 02, 2012

The process of bringing down the cathedral to a safe level is expected to take most of this year. Photographer: Lisa Wiltse/Bloomberg

The process of bringing down the cathedral to a safe level is expected to take most of this year. Photographer: Lisa Wiltse/Bloomberg

(Corrects to show deadliest earthquake in 80 years in first paragraph.)

Christchurch Cathedral, closed since New Zealand’s deadliest earthquake in eight decades struck the city more than a year ago, is to be demolished because the 130- year-old building was damaged beyond repair.

The church will be brought down to a “safe level” of between two and three meters high with no walls left intact, according to the Anglican Church website. No bulldozers or wrecking balls will be used in the demolition.

“I am sad to have to relay this decision but I believe it is the way forward,” Bishop Victoria Matthews said, according to the website.

The condemned church is located in Cathedral Square, at the center of New Zealand’s second-largest city. It was one of the city’s biggest tourist attractions as well as the center of worship for many Christchurch residents. Visitors were able to climb into the cathedral’s spire, which fell off in last year’s Feb. 22 earthquake that killed 185 people.

The process of bringing down the cathedral to a safe level is expected to take most of this year, according to the website.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Bourke in Wellington at cbourke4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Bourke in Wellington at cbourke4@bloomberg.net


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