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Christchurch Campus Building Changes – Community Engagement Update

16 Aug 2023

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Dear valued Community Members,

We understand that not everyone could attend the recent community meeting held on the 14th of August, 2023. So the following is a summary of the discussions and Q&A from the event, ensuring that you are informed about the recent developments concerning our Christchurch campus buildings.

Buildings Sold and Gym Demolition:

During the meeting, several key updates were shared regarding our Christchurch campus. Notably, certain buildings have been sold and are being relocated off-site. We wish to inform you that the gym on our campus is scheduled to be demolished in the middle of September, during the school holidays. This decision relates to the recent changes to building codes, making the gym non-compliant.

Building Removal Schedule:

  • The first flat was successfully moved off-site on the 8th of August
  • The second flat moved off-site on the 15th of August
  • The third flat is scheduled for removal during the week of the 21st of August
  • Additionally, 88 Heberden House will be removed later this year

Gym Demolition Process:

The demolition of the gym will be carried out in two stages. First, the area will be securely fenced off, and asbestos removal procedures will be undertaken. Following this, the actual demolition of the gym will take place. This will happen over a two-week period.

Questions Answered

Several questions were raised during the meeting; see below for the questions and answers.

  • The gym is being taken down due to recent changes in building codes, rendering it non-compliant.

  • The houses are being removed as they are no longer in use and maintaining them incurs significant costs.

  • While no plans have been established at this stage, the Ministry of Education (MoE) will decide on the site's future use. If its decided it’s not to be used for education purposes, the site will go through a process that will take multiple years.

  • The MoE is aware of the site's significance to the Deaf Community and will consult closely with Ko Taku Reo - Deaf Education NZ before making any decisions.

  • The land will be converted into grassy areas.

  • The gym area will be fenced off for safety, and communication will be established, including mail drop notifications to local community members.

  • There are no plans for a replacement gym; however, the hall remains available for use.

  • The Resident houses are in use, maintained by the school, and are up to code.

  • Access to the gym demolition site will likely be through the field, avoiding the old steps and hand sculpture.

  • There are no school students on-site; therefore, the existing buildings are sufficient for Residents and the Early Years Whānau Centre.

  • All other buildings have been assessed and are deemed fit for purpose. Any risks will always be reported to the MoE.

  • After the earthquakes, there was a bulk payment for all schools. Specific details regarding playouts per building are not known.

  • The proceeds from building sales go to the school.

We hope that this summary provides you with a full overview of the topics discussed during the community meeting. Should you have any further questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to email us at