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Special Synod Called On Cathedral Reinstatement Funding

Anglican Bishop The Rt Rev’d Dr Peter Carrell has confirmed a special meeting of the Christchurch Diocesan Synod will be held on 22 June to discuss further financial contribution by the Church to the Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Project.

This follows the announcement in April that the Project faces a considerable funding shortfall of around $114m and needs to secure $30m by August to avoid the site being closed and secured in its current form.

Addressing the need for the further funding, Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Limited (CCRL) Chair Mark Stewart said that the Project, as originally agreed between the church, government, and council, was no longer attainable.

“The reinstatement budget was developed in 2017 and updated in 2020 without the benefit of access to the Cathedral. Access in 2023 allowed us to complete the necessary investigations and planning, providing us with the full information and the revised estimate,” he said.

The upcoming Synod will consider ways in which the church could contribute additional funds to the project. Bishop Peter says the Synod will also consider the possibility of reducing the cost of the project.

“We will be considering removal of base isolation from the Project to significantly reduce cost pressures. An alternative foundation design will target a minimum seismic capacity of 67% New Building Standard (NBS) for an Importance Level 3 building. This is similar to the strengthening approach successfully completed at the Arts Centre. Removal of the base isolators would represent a significant reduction in construction complexity and risk.”

“The Church, Donors, Council and Central Government will need to all work together to develop a solution which ensures the key elements of the Cathedral reinstatement can be successfully completed,” said Mark Stewart.

Bishop Peter said that further details, including any funding decisions by Synod, would be released following the special meeting on 22 June.

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