The proposal for an Order in Council to modify the process for resource consent applications for reinstatement work on the Christ Church Cathedral has been approved.
The Governor-General, Rt Hon Dame Patsy Reddy, made the Order on 24 August 2020, following a recommendation from the Associate Minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration, Hon Poto Williams (the Minister).
On this page:
- Decision to recommend the Order in Council
- Overview of the proposed Order in Council
- The written comment period and Explanation Document
- Background to the process
- About Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Limited and Orders in Council
- Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Review Panel membership
- Background to the Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Project and Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Act 2017
Decision to recommend the Order in Council
In making her decision to recommend to the Governor-General that she approve the proposed Order in Council, the Minister had regard to the written comments received during the written comment period.
Of the 68 comments received, 36 supported the Order, 29 opposed and three partially supported the Order.
As a result of the written comments and feedback from the independent Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Review Panel, Parliament’s Regulations Review Committee and the Minister for the Environment, the Minister refined the Order and decreased its scope.
For example, the Order now:
- takes a more conservative approach to the Citizens’ War Memorial and London Plane trees by placing further conditions on their removal; and
- limits reinstatement to ensure the Cathedral cannot be fully demolished and replaced with a new building.
A copy of the written comments (including a summary) is below:
For more information about the Minister’s decision see the below papers:
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Overview of the Order in Council
Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Limited – the joint venture company delivering the reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral – proposed to the Minister that an Order be made under the Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Act 2017 (the Act).
In May 2020, Cabinet gave permission to draft an Order to modify the process for future resource consent applications for reinstatement work on the Christ Church Cathedral.
The Order will:
- make the reinstatement of the Cathedral more certain,
- prevent lengthy delays of up to two years and work stoppage, and
- keep costs down.
Before a final decision was made to recommend the Order to the Governor-General, the Act required it to be tested robustly.
The Order in Council can be found on the Legislation website.
The written comment period and Explanation Document
Pursuant to section 10 of the Act, the Minister invited written comments from the public on the proposed Order.
The Explanation Document for the proposed Order has:
- an explanation of what the proposal is intended to achieve;
- a description of the proposed effect of the Order; and
- an explanation of why the Minister considers the Order is necessary or desirable for the purpose of the Act.
The Minister publicly notified and invited people to give their views in writing on the proposed Order on this website on 29 May 2020. A public notice was published in The Press on 30 May 2020.
Anyone could make a written comment, which had to be received by 5pm Monday, 22 June 2020.
The Minister had regard to the written comments received by the deadline and these helped the Minister decide to recommend the Order to the Governor-General on 26 August 2020.
Background to the process
The Minister had to undertake certain steps as set out in the Act before making her decision on whether to recommend the Order to the Governor-General.
This included seeking written public comment on the Explanation Document that explained the Order.
Also, the Order had to be:
- reviewed by an independent Review Panel;
- provided to Parliament's Regulations Review Committee for its comment; and
- consulted on with the Minister for the Environment.
About Christ Church Reinstatement Limited and Orders in Council
Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Limited (CCRL) is the joint venture company delivering the project on behalf of the Church Property Trustees (the Cathedral's owner) and the Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Trust (the fundraising trust set up by the Crown).
Under the Act, CCRL can propose Orders to the Minister.
The Order in Council mechanism provides the ability to proceed with the reinstatement work needed by modifying standard processes.
The Order mechanism enables expedited, cost-effective reinstatement processes, and earlier or greater certainty for the Cathedral's owner and the Christchurch community generally.
Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Review Panel membership
As part of the requirements under the Act, a Review Panel has been appointed – whose role is to review draft Orders and provide recommendations to the Minister on any proposed Order.
Review Panel members are:
- Hon Nicholas Davidson QC (convenor)
- Kyle Davis
- Amanda Dewar
- David Ayers
- Sarah Dawson
- Sina Cotter Tait
Background to the Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Project and Christ Church Reinstatement Act 2017 (the Act)
Reinstatement of the Christ Church Cathedral is a key project in Christchurch’s regeneration and maintaining momentum is of great importance and interest to the Crown.
The Cathedral's future was the focus of public debate after sustaining significant damage in the 22 February 2011 earthquake. Litigation between heritage groups and its owner led to the Crown stepping in to facilitate negotiations. This resulted in an agreement between these groups in 2017 that the Cathedral could be reinstated.
The Crown subsequently reached an agreement with the Cathedral's owner on a range of support for reinstatement, including:
- promoting legislation (the Christ Church Cathedral Reinstatement Act) to modify normal process;
- establishing an independent trust to lead public fundraising and enter a joint venture to deliver the project; and
- financial contributions totalling $25 million, including a $15 million suspensory loan, to help bridge the fundraising gap.
You can view a copy of the Act on the New Zealand Legislation website.
The Act recognises the Cathedral's contribution to cultural, social, and economic wellbeing in Christchurch, its importance to Christchurch's regeneration, and its heritage value.
Under section 24 of the Act the Minister is required to present an annual report to the House of Representatives.
These reports must include a list of the Orders in Council made under the Act during that period and a brief description of those Orders.
To view all of the annual reports please see the "Related content" section below.