Christchurch remedial work cost blowout

Original estimates of remedial wotk on Christchurch earthquake repairs was originally predicted to be $60-70 million, but the costs have blown out to $270 million. And a lawyer suggests this could easily double again.

RNZ: Christchurch re-repairs cost EQC $270m in total

EQC has spent more than a quarter of a billion dollars on re-repairing Christchurch quake-damaged homes and on cash settlements for remedial work, $200m more than what it estimated the overall cost would be.

Yesterday, Checkpoint reported the cost of EQC-managed re-repairs of quake damaged homes had risen from a predicted $60-$70-million to $160m.

Today the commission revealed that figure actually stands at $170m, while cash settlements have reached $100m for 8000 homes. This brings the total bill to $270m.

Anthony Harper lawyer Peter Woods, whose firm has represented about 200 claimants against the EQC and insurers, said he was not surprised by the cost of re-repairs completed on quake-affected homes.

“And there is a lot more that’s got to be done. I think what we’re seeing is that the claims coming in for remedials now are harder, more expensive and harder for EQC to figure out.

“The money they’ve spent so far has probably been spent on the easier stuff. I wouldn’t be surprised if that figure doubles.”

Unsurprisngly politics comes into this.

Minister Responsible for the Earthquake Commission Megan Woods said she was concerned about how big the re-repair figure could get.

“The difficult part is we don’t know what we don’t know. We don’t know how many re-repairs are yet to be identified.”

She said the previous National government had been “cutting and running on Christchurch” and her government had to clean up the mess.

Dr Woods said she had appointed an independent ministerial adviser and an interim chair to the EQC to ensure the re-repairs were managed correctly.

She was now seeking updated projections from Treasury.

Previous minister in charge of the Christchurch rebuild, Gerry Brownlee, would not respond to requests for comment.


  1. Ray

     /  April 6, 2018

    So the early estimates were wrong and that is a scandal!
    I note the new minister while claiming it is a scandal is not prepared to estimate just what it might cost.
    While RNZ (John Campbell) has run the line about those who have lost out, there is no mention of the large number have done very well out of the earthquake repairs to their houses.

    • Blazer

       /  April 6, 2018

      so much for Nationals prudent ‘safe pair of hands’ b/s.Their crowning achievements were supposed to be handling the GFC and the Chch earthquakes with….’aplomb’.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2018

      Hmm. I better have a listen. This sounds like another “That pisses me off, to be honest” moment for Big Gerry.

    • Gezza

       /  April 6, 2018

      Well, that was interesting. Gerry showing his sensitive side. Said he was very hurt by Megan’s nasty comments. Then waffled on so much by about halfway thru I should’ve given up and started work on prepping me guitar for painting. Difficult man to interview. He wanted to do ALL the talking. Wasn’t interested in answering question. Loved it when he said he never refused an interview with RNZ and 30 seconds later said there’s one RNZ journalist I won’t talk to ! :o:

  2. alloytoo

     /  April 6, 2018

    The real issue here is that the Christchurch earthquakes were by and large unprecedented events, as a result EQC and the insurance companies were immediately competing for limited human resources to upscale there operations (in the case of EQC) almost exponentially.

    It would be completely contrary to the history of any human endeavour if no mistakes were made.

    The government of the day diverted, with the general approval of the opposition and the country as a whole, considerable resources toward Christchurch in the wake of the quakes.

    While a best effort can always be constructively criticised for execution, it should never be criticised for intention or effort.

    Wood’s accusations are frankly scummy and reflect more on her and her government than anyone else.

    • duperez

       /  April 6, 2018

      It’s a great day in the news when we have Gerry harrumphing, “scurrilous and unreasonable.” Picture that if you will.

      And then the noble call, “While a best effort can always be constructively criticised for execution, it should never be criticised for intention or effort.”

      I’ll email Clare Curran and suggest she use that, just that and only that. How do you reckon that’ll go down?

      • Alloytoo

         /  April 6, 2018

        Well if Clare Curran’s intent to deceive Parliment and the country had the support of our citizenry and the opposition…….