Historic ‘Our House’ to be lifted for Earthquake Repair Work
The previously threatened grade-one heritage convent and chapel formerly owned by the Community of the Sacred Name, is just two weeks away from being raised metres into the air to facilitate foundation repair work. The foundation repair work is part of the restoration deal which will see the historic building transformed into the new home for the head office, and counselling services of Home and Family Society Christchurch.
Owner of Heritage House Relevellers Ltd, Lindsay Smith says, “The lift of this building is unique and challenging due to the significant age of the property. The fact that the building was put together in stages over time also adds a unique element to consider in ensuring that the separately constructed parts, remain together throughout the process.”
The historic building located at 319 St Asaph Street, was constructed in stages between 1895 and 1900 was designed by renowned New Zealand architect Benjamin Mountfort, and his son Cyril Mountfort. The lifting of the building will be one of the most significant since the momentous move of Shands Emporium in 2015.
Phillip Duval, Home and Family Society Christchurch’ President says, “several months of intricate and sensitive preparatory work has been undertaken by the team at Simon Construction to ready the building for this historic lift. It will undoubtedly be spectacular to see it uplifted 1.5-2 metres off the ground.”
The refurbishment of Our House serves the Canterbury community through the establishment of a permanent and secure base from which Home & Family can continue their vital work of building happy and safe homes. It also protects and maintains this significant heritage building, allowing the good work that has always been undertaken from within its walls to continue. This gives the convent a new lease on life, preserving its place within the community it has served throughout its history.