Skip to content

Residents want to preserve Addington's heritage

WORTH PRESERVING: Burke St resident Dave Mitchell has lived across the road from Enfield Villa for 24 years.
WORTH PRESERVING: Burke St resident Dave Mitchell has lived across the road from Enfield Villa for 24 years. PHOTO: Hannah Herchenbach

Addington residents fed up at the speed of development in the suburb are calling on the Christchurch City Council to protect the area’s heritage.

Many of more than 400 responses to the council’s district plan, gathered by Addington community development worker Cherylan Davies, questioned the rate of post-quake change in Addington. Sixty-nine spoke of fears of losing the neighbourhood’s “historic and quirky character”, tree-lined streets and small “village-like” atmosphere.

One respondent described apartments in the area as “ugly boxes”; another said they had “no aesthetic contribution to [the] environment and have been built cheaply”.

“No more apartment slums!” another wrote.

Neighbours of three-story apartment blocks have also complained about losing their sun.

Burke Street resident Irene Cleary is upset about plans to replace the 1864 villa adjacent to her property with a three-storey block of flats.

Cleary, who spends all of her widow’s benefit on rent, said the proposed flats would block the sun she needed for her vegetable garden, which she relied on for her food.

Another Burke St resident, Dave Mitchell, told the Mail he would buy the villa to preserve its heritage ‘‘if I won the lotto’’.

Since the earthquakes, Addington has attracted central business offices and bars, and has become an entertainment hub.

One resident questioned whether the council had forgotten about Addington. “The city moved into this tiny community after the earthquakes [but] has offered no infrastructure.”

“Business is staying here even after the rebuilt city – so where is the plan for Addington?”

Spreydon-Heathcote councillor Phillip Clearwater confirmed that there has been no master plan for Addington since the earthquakes, unlike neighbouring Sydenham.

“I think we can expect some more intensification of housing in parts of Addington and Barrington, but not to the detriment of how those suburbs function now.”

He encouraged residents to review and make submissions on the city plan when it is released.

Residents also spoke of their dreams and aspirations for the neighbourhood in submissions, including a youth community space, an arts hub, a library, shared space for community projects and more green spaces.

_Hannah Herchenbach for The Christchurch Mail