Who gets to ‘push the button’ to initiate New Zealand's first ever building implosion will be auctioned off to raise money for the restoration of Canterbury's heritage buildings.
Naylor Love and Ceres NZ, the contractors responsible for the demolition by implosion of the 14-storey Radio Network House, have agreed to donate the fundraising opportunity to the Canterbury Earthquake Heritage Buildings Fund.
Image of Radio Network House, courtesy of Christchurch City Libraries' photostream.
Organisers of the Canterbury Earthquake Heritage Buildings Fund will auction the privilege to push the button to implode the building via an online auction on Trade Me. People who want to place a bid can visit www.trademe.co.nz.
The Trade Me auction will go live at 11am on Tuesday 24 July.
The Canterbury Earthquake Heritage Buildings Fund was established after the 4 September earthquake to provide assistance to owners of heritage buildings to repair earthquake damage. The New Zealand Government has pledged to match dollar-for-dollar all funds raised up to a maximum $10 million, so the final bid price will actually be doubled.
Naylor Love Regional Manager Pete Lockhart says, “Naylor Love is working on several important heritage projects in Christchurch in the aftermath of the earthquakes. These include the Isaac Theatre Royal, Christ’s College, the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament and New Regent Street.
“The winning bidder's tax deductible contribution to the fund will be put towards the restoration of the Isaac Theatre Royal, with the matching donation from the government going towards other restoration projects.
“The Isaac Theatre Royal is one of the oldest theatres in Christchurch still in use as a theatre. For just over a century, the stage at the Theatre Royal has played host to all manner of entertainment from opera to cinema. There are few Cantabrians who will not have enjoyed a performance at the grand old theatre,” says Pete Lockhart.
Ceres NZ’s Long Term Recovery Manager Bill Johnson says, “There has already been a tremendous amount of interest in this auction opportunity. I have had companies calling me with offers as high as $10,000. Companies are recognising the unique exposure they will receive along with the added bonus of assisting Canterbury’s heritage buildings.”
Kristina Pickford, Fundraising Manager for the Canterbury Earthquake Heritage Buildings Fund says, "We appreciate the recognition the fund is getting along with what we hope will be a significant funding boost. We would also like to thank the team at Trade Me for helping us out on the profile front and hosting the auction for free.”
Bidding will close at 6:05pm on Wednesday August 1.
The implosion is scheduled to take place at 8:00am on Sunday morning August 5. Implosion was chosen for Radio Network House because of the short amount of time it takes and the fact that there are not many other buildings close to Radio Network House.
Some key facts about the Radio Network House implosion:
· Total structural weight: approximately 6,100 metric tons.
· Anticipated total weight of explosives: approximately 63 kg (60 kgs of primary explosive and 3 kg of detonating cord).
· Maximum weight of primary explosive detonated at any one time: 2.5 kgs (detonations separated by 8 ms).
· All explosives will be delivered to the site by Orica Mining Services under their New Zealand-approved handler’s certificate for storage, handling and transport.
· Expected duration of building debris hitting the ground from implosion – 7.7 seconds.
· It is not expected dust from the implosion will be an issue – in still air, the heavier particulate matter generated by the implosion will likely fall within 100m of the site boundary.
For further information:
This press release (from the Canterbury Earthquake Heritage Building Fund) is necessarily brief and comments generally on tax deductibility. Qualified professional advice should be sought on a potential bidder's particular circumstances before taking any action.