Mar 8, 2009

Major Christchurch Restoration

A comprehensive restoration is currently underway of a row of nine late Victorian terraced town houses on the south side of Worcester Street, between Barbadoes Street and Fitzgerald Avenue.

Unfortunately, we've been unable to locate a pre-restoration view of the terraced town houses, but they appear to the Right in this circa 1905 photograph.


Jayne said...

The chimneys are all gone!
Like the corner shop from your previous post - I hadn't noticed before.
With so much heritage overlay on houses here in Melb chimneys can't be touched - or, at least, it seems as though they're not to be altered in any shape or form in renovations/rebuilds.

Canterbury Heritage said...

Unlike Melbourne and beyond, in this self-confessed "world-class city" there are no restrictions on what can be done to old buildings.

kuaka said...

a) chimneys have the disconcerting effect of killing householders & wrecking structures in event of earthquakes - a greater risk in Chch than Melbourne.

b) what use a drafty chimney in a city beset by a brown cloud?

Better the chimneys go and the bulk of the buildings remain instead of being cleared for yet another car park. Few "heritage" structures are "saved" in their "100% pure" state. And that may not be such a bad thing.

Off to wash my mouth out with soap; hope I don't get banned from this forum).

Canterbury Heritage said...

The historical record indicates that a house chimney (and most of a two-storey brick wall) last fell in April 1953, as a consequence of a gale rather than an earthquake. No one was injured when a wall of the 1883 house in Percy Street, Linwood collapsed (the house was subsequently demolished).

But heating homes with coal and its by-products made Christchurch a grimy and even less healthy place than it is now (Bronchial infections may be well down, but we're now world leaders in the incidence of Enteritis).

How fortunate are the residents of Temuka and Timaru that "earthquake risks" have not necessitated the removal of chimneys, cornices and pediments from their heritage buildings.

For the sake of aesthetic considerations it would be neither difficult or expensive to replace chimneys, etc. with concrete veneered polystyrene, but with no legislation relating to preserving the exterior appearance of heritage buildings (or a fast buck in it), the ideal must remain no more than a fanciful notion.

No one will ever get banned from this forum, which might well have been eligible for tax-payer funded largesse had we not chosen the politically incorrect option.

Jayne said...

Ah, see here in Melb we recycle the chimneys to carry the vent pipe for gas heaters instead of continuing to burn coal/wood/the odd mother in law at the stake... ;)

edwardothegreat said...

Another frustrating development.
This time, instead of pulling down the building, the developer has chosen to strip the row of terrace houses of all their architectural merit and re-clad in rockcote plaster system!!
Tell me, what is the point in "restoration" if you completely destroy the reason what made these buildings great?
Coming from Melbourne, I am familiar with heritage overlays and covenants in-which entire streets, and almost entire suburbs are protected for their heritage value. This is why Melbourne still retains its character, something Christchurch would have it the council would wake up and see the loss unfolding before our eyes.
One of our only rows of terrace houses, that held character and added value to the street is now gone!
What was the point?