Today, my partner Bruce and I went into town for a bite to eat. We didn’t expect to spend the next 4 and half hours wandering around the city and seeing not one but two buildings demolished. It’s not everyday you have a front row seat to a building demolition – even in Christchurch (as most of the buildings coming down are in the ‘red zone’ and no public are allowed). The DTZ building in the Cashel Mall (right by the Bridge of Remembrance) is just behind the cordon – so anyone can wander up and watch the building being pulled down.
I honestly did not know what to think or feel as I watched this building being pulverised by a wrecking ball. Part of me was absolutely fascinated by the process, but I also felt sombre and wanted to speak in hushed tones. Quite a crowd gathered around to watch and even though it started raining lightly and it was freezing cold people seemed fixated on the building. We watched the engineers go up, wondered what they were doing, then realised there was a beam that they wanted to come down and that they’d attached a cable around the beam. A very large digger then proceeded to pull the beam down. And then the wrecking ball started on the building and it was stunning to watch. After the wrecking ball the digger comes back and goes right into the heart of the building and pulls at things and then walls and floors and paper and filing cabinets and debris go flying down and out landing in a huge pile on the road beside the building.