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The Dirty 30 is down to the final six buildings

Travis Mitchell
Two Fat Indians
The 2 Fat Indians building at 112 Manchester St   Travis Mitchell

Only six buildings remain on the council's barrier site list which started off with 30 quake damaged buildings.

Twisted steel and concrete. Shipping containers propping up facades. Graffiti in the windows and weeds taking over footpaths. 

Six derelict central Christchurch sites remain untouched almost four years after being listed among the city's "Dirty 30" properties. 

The sites were singled out as buildings that can lead to negative perceptions of the city for visitors and investors. A few are at the centre of insurance disputes. 

The remaining sites are: 

  • The Harley Building at 137 Cambridge Terrace 
  • The former Holiday Inn at 170 Cashel Street 
  • 161 Hereford Street 
The Harley Building at 137 Cambridge Terrace. Travis Mitchell
  • The 2 Fat Indians building at 112 Manchester St 
  •  The Peterborough apartments complex at 25 Peterborough St 
  • The former Blue Jean Cuisine at 205 Manchester St 


2 fat side jpeg
The 2 Fat Indians building at 112 Manchester St Travis Mitchell

City Councillor James Gough, who oversees a council working group responsible for regenerating the central city, said the last six barrier sites were the worst of the worst. 

“We are down to the pointy end of the wedge, and sadly, these remaining six are the worst of the lot.” 

Gough said most owners had been good to work with and shown initiative to help with the regeneration of the city, but a small handful were “letting everyone down”. 

James Gough v2
James Gough Travis Mitchell

The remaining derelict sites are a constant reminder to the people of Christchurch of the traumatic earthquakes of 10 years ago. 

Aaron Haymes, head of strategic partnerships for the council, said the reason the council produced the list was because collectively those buildings represented a lack of progress in the city and made the city unattractive. 

"It’s a visible reminder of the effects of the earthquake, and they just do not help contribute to the city getting over the earthquakes and growing again as a prosperous and vibrant city.”  

The council is putting plans in place to give the remaining incentives to make a change and take action on their buildings. 

They are in the middle of a long-term plan in which they want to change the way they deal with the sites. 

“We are wanting to charge up the rates on these vacant undeveloped sites that are unsightly, so we hit the owners in the pocket,” said Gough. 

Gough acknowledged that some had been hard to deal with due to deaths of the owners. 

The Dirty 30 experience highlighted how local authorities struggled with derelict sites, Gough said, adding that a spotlight has been shone on gaps in the regulatory framework. 

The other 24 sites from the original Dirty 30 list are either being fixed up or have been knocked over, or their owners have informed the council of their plans to restore, redevelop or replace them. 

Buildings that have been on the Dirty 30 list