Frequently Asked Questions - timing
Christchurch has been extensively damaged, especially after the February 2011 earthquake. Teams are working across the city to rebuild infrastructure. Not every street will be worked on immediately. We will advise you before works begin in your street.
The rebuild is already underway and will probably take around five years to complete.
SCIRT has prioritised the repair of retaining walls that have impacts on roads, underground services, such as wastewater and water supply, or have a risk of failure that could cause public safety or access issues. Nearby residents and property owners will be advised well in advance of any work to rebuild a wall. You can also keep an eye on the SCIRT website for SCIRT’s schedule of works, which will set out the broad timeframes for the rebuilding of infrastructure throughout the city.
Each wall is unique and construction times will vary depending on a number of factors such as access to the site, ground conditions, the height of the wall and services behind the wall e.g. water, wastewater, utilities. Some complex walls may take up to one year to rebuild, while others will be finished in a few months.
It is important that SCIRT consistently follows the prioritisation process put in place for the rebuild as this is in the best interests of the people of Christchurch. If a wall is deteriorating and poses a safety risk, please contact Christchurch City Council who will organise for temporary stabilisation until the permanent repair can occur.
Higher priority will be given to those walls that pose risk to public safety, access, protection of services and properties.
If the wall is deteriorating and poses a safety risk, please contact Christchurch City Council who will organise for temporary stabilisation under its maintenance contracts until the permanent repair can occur.
This will be influenced by the length of time it takes to secure all the necessary agreements. We have allowed approximately 2 months for this to occur. If it takes substantially longer to gain the necessary easements, construction may be delayed due to work crews and resources being diverted to other high priority projects.
Each wall is unique and construction times will vary depending on a number of factors such as access to the site, ground conditions, the height of the wall, services behind the wall e.g. water, wastewater, utilities. Some walls may take close to one year to rebuild, while others will be finished in a few months.
If you know when the rebuild of your property is scheduled for, please let us know when we move into your area to rebuild a retaining wall. We will try to accommodate your construction works as much as we can.
The reality is that SCIRT's work will affect thousands of people everyday—businesses, road users and residents. While SCIRT understands that the timing of the rebuild works may be inconvenient for you, our responsibility is to do what is in the best interests of the people of Christchurch. This means that any changes to the schedule will be determined using the prioritisation process, rather than responding to individual requests.
The reason these suburbs are later in the rebuild schedule is the type of damage they have suffered. Most of the damage is to residential properties, which is not covered by the infrastructure rebuild. The rock fall issues are also being addressed by Christchurch City Council and also previously by CERA, as SCIRT is not involved in land remediation. As there is only limited infrastructure damage in these suburbs they have a lower priority in the SCIRT schedule of works.
It is expected that the infrastructure rebuild will take around five years to complete.
The level of damage from the Canterbury earthquakes is significant. Work to repair the infrastructure has been ongoing since immediately after the earthquakes and considerable progress has been made to date. However, the rebuild is a huge task, and not everything can be done at once. Once the rebuild gets up to full speed, SCIRT will have a peak monthly spend of about $40 million. On the ground this means SCIRT may have up to 150 work sites operating around the city at any one time. It is also important to remember that we are rebuilding a 'live' system. This means that we need to keep the freshwater, stormwater and wastewater services operational while we fix the systems.
Bringing more people into the rebuild will not necessarily achieve a faster or better result for the city. The timing of different projects within the wider rebuild will mean that demand for resources will need to be managed. It is likely that the infrastructure rebuild will dominate the market for contractors, equipment and supplies, and SCIRT needs to manage these resources to manage demand, supply and pricing. It is important to remember that a high demand will be placed on the construction sector across all the recovery programmes, not just the infrastructure rebuild.
There is also a strong focus on local people and businesses for the rebuild. This includes using local tradespeople, and upskilling unemployed Christchurch residents so they can be part of the construction and rebuild.
It is also important to remember that there is only limited road space for construction teams to work. We also need to keep the traffic moving as best we can about the city during the infrastructure rebuild.
Where rebuild works are scheduled beyond 2013, SCIRT is still assessing and designing the works and therefore we can't yet tell you what exactly the project works will be. However as the rebuild progresses and we have more information, we will know with more certainty what works will be undertaken, and when. Keep a watch on the six month schedule updates which will outline the areas (streets) for construction, and for work notices letting you know about upcoming works in your street. All this information is available from the SCIRT website, in newspapers, and in your community at the local library/Christchurch City Council service centres.
The length of time the construction crews spend in your area depends on the amount and type of rebuild work they need to do, the existing condition of the networks, and the weather conditions. SCIRT understands that the rebuild works can be disruptive, and tries to complete the works as efficiently as possible with as little impact as possible, while still achieving a safe and high quality result. Some works may take many months to complete.
Much of the works done to date has focussed on emergency or make safe repairs identified as priorities before SCIRT was put in place. These repairs focussed on getting fresh water and wastewater services restored, and getting the roads safe. In the future the rebuild will follow the schedule set out in the Rebuild Schedule Priority Map.