The Anglican diocese of Christchurch announced plans yesterday to build a temporary replacement structure for the ruined iconic cathedral. The cathedral, destroyed as a result of recent earthquakes will be replaced by a $5 million dollar (New Zealand) cardboard structure expected to last for twenty years. The new structure will seat 700 and is designed to be multi-use.
""It will give a location for people to come and reflect in what we've been through and, hopefully, gather inspiration for the future.''
As the Christchurch Wizard lurked on the periphery of the press conference as a symbol of his opposition to the original cathedral's demolition, Bishop Victoria Matthews welcomed the church's new home.
She hoped a "pilgrimage route'' would be established between the new site and the old one in Cathedral Square.
"As the cathedral (cordon) walls are lowered, and it becomes a prayer space, a place of beauty and reflection, people can quite easily walk from there to the transitional cathedral. Because that sense of pilgrimage is what we are all involved in here in Christchurch and Canterbury - understanding that there has been loss but that a great new thing is happening and we're invited to be part of that.''
Mr Gray described the move as a "symbol of hope for the future" of the quake-weary city, while being sustainable and affordable."
More here along with an artist's rendering of the proposed cathedral's interior.