Monday, March 28, 2011
The Loss of Important Architectural Heritage
My worst fears have been realised - the magnificent Stone Chamber at the Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings in Christchurch has been destroyed by the February 22nd, 2011 eathquake. Already badly wounded after the September 4, 2010 quake, it had been braced to protect it from further damage. When I cycled past it a few days ago, this is what I saw - a tortured tangled of stone and steel. I've written about the Provincial Council Buildings several times before - (click on Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings in index line below)- and anyone who has stepped inside this large, unique complex will appreciate what a sad loss the Stone Chamber's demise represents. This is what it looked like - a stunning, intricately-crafted architectural masterpiece. I just wish I had taken more close-up photographs of the tile and timber detailing last time I visited before all this terrible earthquake business began. I'm not sure what the final fate of the complex will be. It's not all as obviously damaged as the Stone Chamber, but the rear of the buildings, in the inner courtyard, were badly shattered in the September quake, so it seems unlikely much - if anything - will be saved.