Mapping the Transitional City

One positive thing to come out of the Canterbury earthquakes is the wealth of transitional projects that have sprung up around the city and the surrounding region. In the months and years after the quakes, organisations like Gapfiller, Greening the Rubble, Life in Vacant Spaces, and so many more, have brought back colour and activity to our broken spaces; hope and energy to our tired spirits. Christchurch became a transitional city, full of temporary replacements for normal city life.

A noticeboard advertises Gap Filler's 'Film in the Gap' project.

In 2012, the Christchurch Transitional Architecture Trust and Freerange Press collected together descriptions and photographs of nearly 200 of these projects, to create the book Christchurch: The Transitional City Pt IV.  The book documents not only the main transitional groups, but also a broad range of projects from anonymous artworks to official undertakings such as the temporary stadium and Re:Start mall. CEISMIC has teamed up with Freerange Press to make pages from the book available on-line, together with previously unseen photographs of the projects.

Construction of the 'Cardboard Cathedral'.

To help visualise the scope of the collection, the team at CEISMIC have created a map of the transitional projects. Each pin on the map connects back to the full project description and photographs stored at CEISMIC.

Of course, the map is not yet complete. Christchurch: The Transitional City Pt IV was a snapshot of a moment in time, and many new projects have arisen since its publication. Our hope is to continue to expand the collection, to capture even more of the projects that make our city a vibrant and interesting place to be.

Creative Commons LicensePhotograph of Film in the Gap by Gap Filler, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 New Zealand License.

Creative Commons LicensePhotograph of the Transitional Cathedral by Paul Corliss, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 New Zealand License.