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1000th Christchurch state house repair marked

1000th Christchurch state house repair marked

Housing Minister Dr Nick Smith today marked the completion of the 1000th Housing New Zealand repair in Christchurch as part of the Government’s large-scale post-earthquake repair and rebuild programme for the Canterbury region.

“The repair of the 1000th state house is a significant milestone in our programme to rebuild Christchurch’s social housing following the devastating earthquakes. It gives me confidence we can meet our commitment that by the end of 2015, all 5000 damaged state houses will be fully repaired,” Dr Smith says.

There are three phases to the Housing New Zealand earthquake recovery programme. The first was the urgent and emergency repairs that began in 2010 and involved 27,000 repairs that have all been completed. The second was the Repair 5000 programme to carry out the substantive rebuilds of homes, excluding the 550 damaged beyond repair. This work was able to commence at pace once Housing New Zealand settled its $320 million insurance claim in April last year. The third phase is the 700 New Build programme which will also be completed by the end of 2015.

“This 1000th repaired home at Avondale Road – a two-bedroom unit built in 1975 – required a mechanical lift by pouring concrete pads under the existing foundation and the subsequent filling of the void created under the slab with a low mobility grout,” Dr Smith says.

“Repair 5000 is gaining real momentum. We completed 582 last year following the insurance settlement and an additional 418 so far this year. We are on track to complete 2340 by the end of 2014 and the remainder in 2015.

“Construction on the first builds in the 700 New Builds programme began in May last year, with three two-bedroom units completed in August. Since then, 20 houses have been completed with a further 342 either contracted or under construction currently. Given the size and scale of the project, it’s entirely unsurprising that the rate of progress is picking up now. With the number of completed new builds expected to rise to 250 by the end of this year, I remain confident that we’re on target to meet our target.

“It’s intended that the Repair 5000 and 700 New Builds programme will together restore Housing New Zealand stock levels in Canterbury to pre-quake levels by the end of 2015, and with the added improvement of ensuring the people of Christchurch are living in houses that are better, safer and warmer.

“The Government does not underestimate the housing challenge in Christchurch. We remain focused on our wide programme of work to deliver solutions. There is no magic bullet and we need to make progress on every front. Today’s milestone is a positive step forward.”

Ends

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