Christchurch Update (24 September) Following Earthquake

( The Christchurch City Council, alongside other agencies, continues to work on the recovery phase following the 4 September earthquake.

This is focused on the key areas of infrastructure, welfare, buildings, natural environment, business and rural issues. The Council has been in direct contact with those worst affected as well as keeping the community informed through paid advertising, public meetings, website updates, leaflet and letter drops, house and business visits.

During the next phase of the recovery the Council will be putting out regular media updates outlining the current situation across the areas of concern

Building inspections

So far, Council building inspectors have visited 9196 properties across the city and issued either a green, yellow or red placard. Of these, 7175 (78.03%) have been given green placards, 1067 (11.60%) given yellow placards, and 370 (4.02%) given red placards.

CBD properties make up 1057 of all buildings inspected, and of these 760 (71.91%) have been given green placards, 222 (21.00%) given yellow placards, and 75 (7.09%) given red placards.

Resident properties make up 6877 of all buildings inspected, and of these 5418 (78.80%) have been given green placards, 657 (9.55%) given yellow placards, and 218 (3.16%) given red placards.

See the Council website for information on the different meaning of green, yellow and red placards. In all instances, this is only a brief inspection and property owners should organise their own inspections. Inspections are being carried out at the request of owners or in areas of the city know to be badly affected.

Grants and funding
There are now a number of ways people can apply for assistance if they have been affected by the earthquake. They include:

Red Cross Canterbury Earthquake Commission Grants

• Hardship grants
One-off $1000 hardship grants are for those residents who have experienced a significant effect on their financial situation, health or welfare. They are not available to businesses which have been displaced as a result of the earthquake.
If you have any questions relating to the Hardship Grant application process or if you need assistance with completing an application, please contact: the Government Helpline (0800 779 997 )

• Emergency grants
One-off emergency grants are to assist those who have been displaced from their homes as a result of damage arising from the earthquake and have had to leave their usual place of residence due to damage. Emergency Grants are not available to businesses which have been displaced as a result of the earthquake – if you have a business seeking assistance, visit

See the New Zealand Red Cross Canterbury Earthquake Commission website to find out more about the criteria for selection.

Discretionary Response Fund – for groups
The purpose of the Discretionary Response Fund (DRF) is to assist community groups where their project funding request falls outside other Council funding criteria and/or closing dates. This fund is also for emergency funding for unforeseen situations.
Local and Metropolitan Discretionary Response Funds are available for groups that are in genuine need. The Council is working to streamline the application, assessment and sign-off processes to make it a straight-forward as possible for groups in need. The Council funding team will assist groups wanting to make an application.

For more information about the criteria and application form, see

Mayor’s Welfare Fund – for individuals or families
The Mayor’s Welfare Fund provides assistance to families and individuals who are in extreme financial distress. The fund works with other helping agencies in the city and can provide assistance on a one-off basis where real need can be shown. The fund is a last resort measure when people have exhausted other appropriate sources such as Work and Income New Zealand.
This is the existing fund that is administered through the Council. Appointments can be made by calling the Council call centre (03) 941 8999 or 0800 800 169 or visiting Ground Floor reception at the Civic Offices at 53 Hereford Street.

For more information about how to apply see

Council staff have inspected cemeteries in the city and Banks Peninsula and found a number of unstable or broken headstones. Areas have been taped-off where there are safety issues and hazard signs will be in place by this weekend where required.

Council facilities
Libraries – all Council libraries except Sumner library are open.
Recreation and Sport Centres – all facilities are operating a full service, including QEII leisure pool and hydroslides.
Service centres – all of these are now open.

For more information visit the Council website

Media Release 24 September 2010 from Christchurch City Council.