CERA (the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority) started demolishing houses in the Christchurch residential red zones last year. Already 2,074 houses have been demolished and demolitions are speeding up now. More than 6,000 house owners have now sold their house to the government. A few people have still not made a decision about whether to take the government’s offer or their insurance company’s offer.
After demolishing all the houses in one area, workers have to leave the area tidy. They remove fences, clothes lines, paths and driveways ready for planting grass. Landscape architects help to make decisions about which plants to keep. They try to keep trees. Smaller plants can be recycled by community groups.
Listen to April 2nd 2013 to hear more about people in the red zone selling their houses to the government.
• demolish (v), demolition (n) – use a bulldozer or other machinery to break the house and push it down.
• residential – where people live
• landscape architects – design gardens and public outdoor areas
• recycled – sold or given to other people