Recently I have been promoting an idea for the rebuild of Christ Church Cathedral which has created a lot of interest.
Now that we have agreement on the restoration of the Cathedral, nobly supported by the Church, the Government, City Council and generous private benefactors we will begin to embark on a seven to ten year restoration programme. I think we should turn the restoration of the Cathedral into a tourist attraction rather than hiding it behind high fences and under shrouds of plastic as it goes through the restoration process. Why not celebrate the restoration of the Cathedral and turn it into a tourist attraction?
A transparent fence could be erected around the construction site. A couple of temporary grandstands could be placed at appropriate locations just outside that fence so that visitors to the Square could sit and watch progress on the Cathedral.
Having the Cathedral restored in full view to the residents of Christchurch and visitors to our city would in its own right become a significant attraction, drawing people into the Square to watch the restoration real time. This would give our city a real sense of ownership of the restoration process and create another attraction in the Square.
Given the timeframes involved in the restoration process, concealing the rebuild of the Cathedral is unconscionable.