Decision on Christ Church Cathedral won't be made until September

A decision on a possible rebuild of the Christ Church Cathedral will not be made until September.

The Breakfast host asks Govt minister Gerry Brownlee why more progress on fixing the quake damaged cathedral has not been made. Source: Breakfast

A committee of the Anglican diocese parishioners and priests will make the decision on the fate of the building.

This announcement is the latest hold-up in what has become a controversial topic in the Christchurch City rebuild.

"We are very aware that the city and beyond is very frustrated with the amount of time it has taken to reach a decision on the future of our beloved Cathedral. Church Property (CPT) and the entire Diocese share that frustration," said Bishop Victoria Mathews.

The Christ Church Cathedral has been in ruins for six years following the devastating magnitude 6.3 earthquake.  

She said the diocesan Synod will make the decision about the future of the cathedral rather that CPT.

"As the Christ Church Cathedral is a church building above all else, and a place of worship, the decision on its future should be made by the membership of the Synod comprising the gathered clergy and laity of the Diocese who will be using the Cathedral forever."

The members of the Synod will decide whether to accept an offer to assist with reinstatement from the government or construct an "inspirational contemporary cathedral", that will require the $42 million insurance fund.

In 2013 the Synod voted for church to proceed with a contemporary cathedral design, with the view that a new cathedral will cost no more than the insurance fund.

"For the past six and a half years Church Property Trustees and its staff have done extraordinary due diligence on different options regarding the future of the Cathedral. This includes engineering investigations, quantity surveying and research into fundraising options," said Bishop Mathews.

She said they undertook a survey of public preferences among Greater Christchurch residents and found people were divided on whether the Anglican church should reinstate the Cathedral building in the Square or commit to building a new contemporary Cathedral.

"A majority of the Church Property Trustees are inclined to support the contemporary option however these preferences are still not decisive. This is a vitally important question for our Diocese, the Canterbury community and impacts the regeneration of Christchurch which is why I have now made the decision to take the vote to Synod," said Bishop Mathews.