Sidey’s Weekend Theme 05.08.2011 – Cardboard
Design of ‘cardboard cathedral’ unveiled
REVEALED: Japanese architect, Shigeru Ban, has designed a “temporary” cathedral for Christchurch. HOPEFUL: Christ Church Cathedral Dean Peter Beck.Relevant offersA cardboard replacement for the earthquake-damaged Christ Church Cathedral could become a permanent feature of the new city.
Designs for the proposed temporary “cardboard cathedral” were unveiled in Christchurch yesterday by world-renowned Japanese architect Shigeru Ban.
The Anglican cathedral would be built with locally produced cardboard tubes erected in an A-shape, with shipping containers used as foundations.
Ban said the building would cost $4 million, take three months to build and could seat 700 people. A triangular stained glass window could be designed by a local artist, he said.
Ban has built temporary homes, schools, shelters and a cathedral for disaster zones across the world, including Rwanda in 1994, Kobe after the 1995 earthquake, Turkey in 1999 and Haiti last year.
Christ Church Cathedral Dean Peter Beck said the search was on for an inner-city site for the cathedral, which could be used by orchestras, other churches and community groups.
The Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Trust, a fund run by Prime Minister John Key’s office, has granted $50,000 for a feasibility study into the project. The study will include a business case on how the $4m would be raised for the project.
Ban said the building could become permanent”If you love the building it is permanent, if not it is temporary.”
A similar cathedral Ban designed for Kobe after the 1995 quake was still in use. It was used for 10 years in Kobe, before it was relocated to Taiwan.
Beck said he hoped the cardboard cathedral could be complete for the one-year anniversary of the February earthquake.
He said it could “attract visitors to the central city and support the rebuild of Christchurch”.
“An interim, relocatable cathedral is a symbol of hope for the region. It is a sign of hope and confidence and a thing of beauty in the midst of all the desolation.”
Ban, who has worked on the project for free, said the dimensions of the cardboard cathedral were based on the original. The triangular shape was taken from the dimensions of the cathedral’s front facade and the floor plan is based on the shape of the cathedral interior.
“We are hoping to complete this before 22 February with a very limited amount of money. It is very simple and easy to build and uses local materials.
Ad Feedback “I think you have to build a future city that may be different from the previous Christchurch. You need to build a new Christchurch, not just bring back the previous one.”
Beck said the church was determined to rebuild a permanent new cathedral.
“The cathedral is in a very bad way and we are not sure yet what we want to do with it. We will build a new cathedral in the same place, but that will be some time away.”
Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker said the cardboard cathedral could help the rebuild of the city.
“I don’t think it will be too difficult to find a place to put a new temporary cathedral,” he said.
“The transition phase for our community from where we are now to when the permanent buildings start to arrive, that is a vital phase for Christchurch. How we handle that to make it positive is at the core of our planning now.”