Landscaping of the former site of the Canterbury Television (CTV) building will begin next week.
“The site will become a special part of the city – a peaceful place to sit and reflect, with grass and gardens,” says Ōtākaro Limited Chief Executive Albert Brantley.
“The lawn and the three former car parks on the Cashel Street side of the site will be retained. There will be a central grove of cherry trees as well as New Zealand native plants and international plants to provide variety and colour.”
“A stone plinth will include a water feature that pours into the garden bed.”
The collapse of the CTV building on the corner of Cashel and Madras Streets resulted in the loss of 115 lives and the injury of many more people in the February 2011 earthquakes.
“Feedback has been sought from CTV bereaved family members who lost loved ones in the earthquake and that feedback has been an important consideration in developing the design,” says Mr Brantley.
Words of remembrance will be incorporated into a vertical structure where mementoes and flowers can be placed or attached. A sign at the entranceway will provide visitors with information about what happened at the site.
Mr Brantley says as much of the original foundation as possible will be retained. The western side will be covered in stone chip. Planter boxes will be placed on the eastern side entrance where the concrete is exposed.
“This mix of surfaces will ensure that a range of visitor preferences can be met. Those who want to visit the site but not see the concrete will be able to do so. While those who wish to touch the slab will also have that opportunity.”
“Lighting will ensure the space is safe and visually pleasing during the day and night. Wheelchair access will be provided into the site,” says Mr Brantley.
Weather permitting, work on the site is expected to be completed by 21 February 2018.