St Gerard’s – strengthening costs not a “headache”

St Gerard's

The International Catholic Programme of Evangelisation (IPCE) owns Wellington’s St Gerard’s monastery and church buildings.

The buildings are rated at 25 per cent of the New Building Standard (NBS), anything under 34 per cent is considered earthquake-prone.

IPCE have until 2027 to complete the strengthening.

They have just $42,000 sitting in a fund to get it earthquake strengthened, falling well short of the $11 million that’s needed.

Already engineer and quantity surveyor reports have cost tens of thousands of dollars.

But the director of St Gerard’s church and monastery Silvana Abela told the New Zealand Herald they didn’t look at the situation as a “headache” and the strengthening cost was just life.

The biggest problem is the church, which could take up $8 million of the total cost.

They are pursuing several avenues to raise money, including selling the property they also own at 1 Oriental Terrace.

The sale would provide more than $1 million.

Abela said they were also looking at fundraising options and were in contact with “major donors”, but said she could not disclose further details while negotiations are ongoing.

“We will continue working towards it, and I have a lot of faith that we’ll manage to do it,” Abela said.

Abela confirmed they have applied to Wellington City Council for an extension of five years to get the church earthquake strengthened.

The Redemptorists built St Gerard’s church in 1908 and the monastery in 1932.

Two of Wellington’s most well-known architects, John Swan and Frederick de Jersey Clere, designed it.

In 1988, costs associated with the buildings and their declining numbers, made the Redemptorists decide to sell the buildings.


Additional reading

News category: New Zealand.

Tags: , , ,