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Temporary Christchurch Cathedral will be built out of cardboard

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first_imgThe quake that hit Christchurch in February caused considerable damage to the original Christchurch Cathedral built in 1864, destroying the spire and part of the bell tower, as well as much of the remaining building. June’s quake shattered the stained glass panels. The city of Christchurch was literally built around this cathedral, and the building has seen many an earthquake over the years, but the past two hits were some of the most damaging.The city is still deciding what to do about another permanent cathedral, but for the time being, to commemorate the 1-year anniversary of the earthquake, architect Shigeru Ban has been commissioned to create a structure to fill the space. However, Ban won’t be bringing in cement trucks and metal beams for his building, as he is most famous for his innovative work that uses paper and cardboard tubing as material for building construction.The architect will be building a cardboard cathedral to take the place of the 19th century building. Ban was the first architect in Japan to construct a building primarily out of paper, and he prefers using paper because it’s low in cost, recyclable, low-tech, and replaceable. His work with paper is focused on sustainability since it produces little waste.Ban has built DIY refugee shelters in the past, and his work was used after the Great Hanshin Earthquake struck the Japanese city of Kobe in 1995. It’s also been used in Turkey, Rwanda, and around the world. The structures are very popular and effective for low-cost disaster-relief housing.Besides refugee shelters, Ban builds beautiful structures like libraries, houses, pavilions, theaters, and tea houses, to name a few. After the Kobe earthquake, Ban built a paper church (pictured above) that stood from 1995 to 2005 and was completed in only five weeks with the help of church volunteers. The structure is enclosed within a skin of corrugated, polycarbonate sheeting.The temporary Christchurch Cathedral will be constructed out of 86 locally made cardboard tubes which each weighing 1,102 lbs. The tubes will create an A-frame structure that peaks at about 78 feet. It will also boast a large stained glass window. The structure will take about three months to construct and will seat 700 people. The entire construction will cost $2,876,600, and Ban is working on the project for free. Ban said the structure could be used for a decade.If the thought of a paper church makes you a little nervous, the material is treated before construction to make sure it’s fireproof and weatherproof. Ban said Christchurch needed to build a new city, “not just bring back the previous one.”Ban is also working on another project close to the northern Japan city of Sendai where the devastating 8.9/9.0 magnitude earthquake hit in March. This structure will accommodate people who lost their homes in the earthquake and tsunami. Ban doesn’t like to waste any materials, so when his structures are brought down, he always recycles them into pulp to be used for more paper and cardboard.Read more at Shigeru Ban Architects, via The Telegraphlast_img read more