CERA- What are you doing? Hello… any one home???


I just don’t get it.  CERA pressured us to make safe the Duncan’s Buildings in High Street with 10 day make safe demands.   You may remember the drama. Since then nothing…….    There are only 2 of us in the row of 16 who have made any concerted attempt to repair our buildings.   The others have been left alone for 17 months. No progress at all.   The buildings are now in an increasingly poor state of repair.  The parapets/frontage look worse by the day. There are 2 buildings that have collapsed and are a mess.  Heritage has ignored us completely. Do they really want this row saved or not?  One wonders.  If they do they better start talking.    What is going on and why?  It looks increasingly likely that there will now be gaps in the row.  Demolition by neglect I call it.  I appreciate that many of the owners have insurance issues, but this is ridiculous.

Are they toothless when it comes to forcing action? Why have they let the building owners do nothing? Why no forced sales? Why no forced demolitions? Why no action? What agenda is being played out here?  It is interesting that in Kobe, Japan, after the 1995 earthquake that the precinct that made the most noise and objected the most was the last to be repaired.  Looks like we are it!

On the same theme, I notice that there is a project called “Project Phoenix”.  You know rising from the ashes and all that mythology stuff.   “An inter-active planning strategy for the High Street Precinct”.   Humm    Sounds good. Great idea for the area.  The trouble is there will be no “precinct” in our block unless some of the Duncan’s Building owners get moving.  More stalling tactics…?  Who will benefit from this?  Interesting that it is also a commercial proposal, offering Finance, Insurance, Engineering capacity etc. Oh oh  goodie we get to have some more meetings to discuss the “spirit of the place” and “Structural & Seismic performance and cost and time savings with large-build construction methodology”.

Humm  what fun, more meetings….. no action ? no progress…. no speed…. they have had 16 months already…. hello any one home at CERA????   what are you doing????   Recovery or demolition???   make up your mind?  Economics??? Productivity???  Recovery??? ( incidentally the productivity of the building industry is appalling,  they appear to be incapable of staying on the job, organising work flow and following deadlines Compared to the Print industry they are dinosaurs.  We are used to project managing work flow, the Building Industry seems to work on a different time line, ie no line at all!   But I will keep this for another day.)

One of the interesting issues here is, that with the work we have done, the buildings on both side of us can be demolished and we can stand alone.   Given the state the CBD is in  (with out the B of course, as there is no Business in the central Area, and I think there will never be any)  this is looking like a possibility.

Ho humm another week in paradise.

Ps I forgot to say that I can not find brick layers to repair the frontage.  So we still have a gaping hole in the wall.  And don’t start me off on Insurance issues.  That is another story!


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