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Homeless people using 'unsafe', abandoned building as shelter

Harry Poland
The Sockburn Service Centre in its current state.  Harry Poland

Residents want abandoned Sockburn Service Centre demolished because homeless people are using it as an "unsafe" shelter.

Members of the Greater Hornby Residents Association are concerned about homeless people residing in the Sockburn Service Centre.

The centre, in between Blenheim Rd and Riccarton Rd, was abandoned after the 2011 earthquakes.

The building was left in a state of disrepair, and homeless people began living in the centre. Thwe Christchurch City Council boarded up all the windows and doors in an effort to prevent this.

The Greater Hornby Residents Association wants the demolition of the building to be prioritised.

"There is a potential for people to break back in and continue residing in the unsafe building," said Ross Holliston, Treasurer of the Greater Hornby Residents Association.

The Sockburn Service Centre was approved for demolition by engineers some time ago, but buildings closer to the city centre such as the "Dirty 30" have taken priority.

The city council originally said there would be no funding for the demolition until 2022. Holliston said it was just a matter of getting the funding, "so that they can actually get on with the demolition".