Shigeru Ban’s Cardboard Cathedral Underway in New Zealand

Courtesy of Christchurch City Libraries’ Flickr

Shigeru Ban just can’t get enough of paper tubes. The Japanese architect, renowned for his design of structures that can be quickly and inexpensively erected in disaster zones, is at it again in the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, which was hit hard by a devastating earthquake last February. The earthquake of magnitude 6.3 killed over 200 people and inflicted irreparable damage on the city’s iconic gothic cathedral of 132 years. The cathedral was a copy of one in Oxford, England, and was one of the most famous landmarks of the Christchurch, pictured on postcards, souvenirs and tea towels.

A pioneer in so-called “emergency architecture,” Shigeru Ban has begun construction on a highly anticipated, unique replacement: a simple A-frame structure composed of paper tubes of equal length and 20 foot containers. The tubes will be coated with waterproof polyurethane and flame retardants that the architect has been developing since 1986 – years before environmental friendliness and the use of inexpensive were even a concern in architecture.

Read more about Ban’s visionary Cardboard Cathedral after the break…

Nikau House / Strachan Group Architects

© Jackie Meiring

Architects: Strachan Group Architects
Location: Parnell,
Architect In Charge:
Design Team: Dave Strachan, Pat de Pont, Jessica Knight
Engineer: Thorne Dwyer Structures
Builder: Dave McGillivray
Area: 230.0 sqm
Photographs: Jackie Meiring

Waiatarua House / Hamish Monk Architecture

© Mark Smith

Architects: Hamish Monk Architecture
Location: Auckland,
Contractor: McGillivray Builders
Sub Consultants: Assemble ltd
Structural Engineer: Blueprint Consulting Engineers
Geotechnical Engineer: Engineering Design Consultants
Area: 225 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Mark Smith

Seaview House / Parsonson Architects

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Parsonson Architects
Location: Wellington,
Year: 2011
Photographs: Paul McCredie

Thomson Cottage Renovations and Addition / Bonnifait + Giesen

© Russell Kleyn

Architects: Bonnifait + Giesen
Location: New Plymouth,
Main Contractor: Dave Fabish Builders
Structural Engineering: Spencer Holmes Engineers
Client: Jeremy Thomson
Year: 2012
Photographs: Russell Kleyn

City House / Architex

© Simon Devitt

Architects: Architex
Location: Auckland,
Site Area: 400 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Simon Devitt

New Shoots Childrens Centre / Collingridge and Smith Architects

Courtesy of

Architects: Collingridge and Smith Architects
Location: Papamoa, Bay of Plenty,
Architect In Charge: Phil Smith
Design Team: Phil Smith, Graham Collingridge, Grayson Wanda, Chloe Pratt
Area: 650 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Courtesy of Collingridge and Smith Architects

Te Mirumiru / Collingridge & Smith Architects

© Simon Devitt

Architects: Collingridge & Smith Architects
Location: , northland
Architect In Charge: Phil Smith
Design Team: Phil Smith, Graham Collingridge, Grayson Wanda, Chloe Pratt
Client: Ngati Hine Health Trust
Mechanical & Electrical Consultant: Eco Design Consultants and WSP
Planning Supervisor: Simon Yates
Lightning Consultant: Mike Renwick, Lighthouse Remuera
Contractor|: Howard Harnett Builders
Area: 572.0 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Simon Devitt

Cornege-Preston House / Bonnifait + Giesen

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Bonnifait + Giesen
Location: Martinborough, , New Zealand
Main Contractor: Borman Builders
Structural Engineer: Spencer Holmes Engineers
Property Owners: Anne Cornege, Ted Preston
Area: 200 sqm
Photographs: Paul McCredie

Lloyd Holiday House / Bonnifait + Giesen

© John Girdlestone

Architects: Bonnifait + Giesen
Location: , Wellington,
Main Contractor: Duncan Construction Ltd.
Property Owners: Heather and Trevor Lloyd
Area: 140 sqm
Photographs: John Girdlestone

Wairau Valley House / Parsonson Architects

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Parsonson Architects
Location: Rapaura,
Year: 2010
Photographs: Paul McCredie

Storm Cottage / Fearon Hay Architects

© Patrick Reynolds

Architects: Fearon Hay Architects
Location: Great Barrier Island, Auckland,
Interiors Collaborator: Penny Hay
Area: 100 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Patrick Reynolds

Telecom Central / Architecture +

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Architecture +
Location: Wellington,
Design Team: Stuart Gardyne, Stephen Poulopoulos, Michael Bennett, Andrew Camberis, Iain Hibbard, Arnie Makan, Nick Whiting, Claudio Holzer, Mervyn Rothwell, Ben Crichton, Lucy McAuliffe, Bridget White, Kim Manford, Rachel Logie, Kirsty Chamberlain, Craig Thomson
Area: 35,000 sqm
Year: 2011
Photographs: Paul McCredie

S House / Glamuzina Paterson Architects

© Patrick Reynolds

Architects: Glamuzina Paterson Architects
Location: Mount Eden, Auckland,
Project Team: Dominic Glamuzina and Aaron Paterson
Collaborators: Xanthe White (landscape architect)
Area: 273 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Patrick Reynolds

Lucerne / Daniel Marshall Architects

© Emily Andrews & Ernie Shackles

Architects: Daniel Marshall Architects
Location: Orakei Basin, , New Zealand
Design Team: Daniel Marshall, Emrana Sikder, Cameron Pollock, Nick Sayes
Year: 2011
Photographs: Emily Andrews & Ernie Shackles

Visitor Centre for Equestrian and Mountain Biking / Jasmax

© Mark Craven

Architects: Jasmax
Location: Paremoremo, , New Zealand
Architects: Euan Mac Kellar, Mark Craven
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: 250 sqm
Photographs: Simon Devitt, Mark Craven

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Stephenson & Turner Wellington Design Studio – Fit Out / Stephenson&Turner

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Stephenson&Turner NZ Ltd
Location: Wellington,
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Paul McCredie

Video: Christchurch Central Recovery Plan

As a collaborative effort involving urban designers, architects, economists, and developers, the Christchurch Central Recovery Plan was assembled as a video to present to the public. Led by the Christchurch Central Development Unit (CCDU) in , which is part of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (CERA), the plans for the central city rebuild was released earlier this week as a response to the earthquake sequence in Canterbury which destroyed most of the building stock in the CBD. This distinctive, vibrant, and green 21st century city has been met with overall positive feedback, which demonstrates the importance of shared ideas on rebuilding after natural disasters. On a global scale, all cities ad towns are at risk for natural disasters, and as many of us know, preparation is key to recovery. Like the video above, the power of public opinion can really have a major impact on these types of plans and give us both a feasible and optimistic view of the future.