Old Government Building, Christchurch

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Old Government Building
The Old Government Building Christchurch..jpg
Old Government Building in 2015
General information
Architectural style Italian High Renaissance palazzo
Location Christchurch Central City
Address98 Worcester St
Town or cityChristchurch
CountryNew Zealand
Coordinates 43°31′52″S172°38′17″E / 43.53106°S 172.638075°E / -43.53106; 172.638075 Coordinates: 43°31′52″S172°38′17″E / 43.53106°S 172.638075°E / -43.53106; 172.638075
Construction started1910
Design and construction
Architect Joseph Maddison
Awards and prizesCanterbury Heritage Awards – Seismic category winner in 2012 and Built Heritage Award winner in 2010
Designated5 April 1984
Reference no.301

The former Government Building is a heritage building in Christchurch, New Zealand. It was designed by Joseph Maddison in 1909. [1] It is a Category I heritage building listed with Heritage New Zealand.

Christchurch City in South Island, New Zealand

Christchurch is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand and the seat of the Canterbury Region. The Christchurch urban area lies on the South Island's east coast, just north of Banks Peninsula. It is home to 404,500 residents, making it New Zealand's third-most populous city behind Auckland and Wellington. The Avon River flows through the centre of the city, with an urban park located along its banks.

New Zealand Country in Oceania

New Zealand is a sovereign island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean. The country geographically comprises two main landmasses—the North Island, and the South Island —and around 600 smaller islands. It has a total land area of 268,000 square kilometres (103,500 sq mi). New Zealand is situated some 2,000 kilometres (1,200 mi) east of Australia across the Tasman Sea and roughly 1,000 kilometres (600 mi) south of the Pacific island areas of New Caledonia, Fiji, and Tonga. Because of its remoteness, it was one of the last lands to be settled by humans. During its long period of isolation, New Zealand developed a distinct biodiversity of animal, fungal, and plant life. The country's varied topography and its sharp mountain peaks, such as the Southern Alps, owe much to the tectonic uplift of land and volcanic eruptions. New Zealand's capital city is Wellington, while its most populous city is Auckland.

Joseph Maddison architect

Joseph Clarkson Maddison was a New Zealand architect. He trained as an architect in his native London and came to Canterbury at the age of 22. At the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century, he was one of the most prominent architects in Christchurch, receiving commissions from all over the country. Until the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake, 13 of his buildings were listed by the New Zealand Historic Places Trust on their register, with three of those Category I listings, but many of the Christchurch buildings have been demolished since. His style was plain and utilitarian, and he specialised in the classical Italian mode.


The building was designed to centralise various government departments in Christchurch that had previously been housed in the Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings and other rented spaces throughout the city. [2] [3] The Government Buildings opened in 1913 and housed various Government departments up until the 1980s. The last Government department to occupy the building was the Ministry of Works and Development. [1] After being vacant for some time the building was threatened to be demolished in 1991. On 11 July 1991 the Christchurch City Council purchased the building from the government for $735,000. The council then sold it to the ‘Symphony Group’ in 1995 and it was converted into a hotel with the conditions to strengthen and conserve the building. [1] [4] It is now home to the Heritage Hotel Christchurch and the bar O.G.B. [5] [6]

Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings

The Canterbury Provincial Council Buildings were the buildings of the Canterbury Provincial Council that administered the Canterbury Province from 1853 until the abolition of provincial government in 1876. The buildings are the only purpose-built provincial government buildings in New Zealand still in existence. The buildings were substantially damaged in the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake, and partially demolished by the Christchurch City Council.

Christchurch City Council local government authority for Christchurch, Canterbury in New Zealand

The Christchurch City Council is the local government authority for Christchurch in New Zealand. It is a territorial authority elected to represent the 388,400 people of Christchurch. Since October 2013, the Mayor of Christchurch is Lianne Dalziel, who succeeded Bob Parker. The council currently consists of 16 councillors elected from sixteen wards, and is presided over by the Mayor, who is elected at large. The number of elected members and ward boundaries changed prior during the 2016 election.

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Chief Post Office, Christchurch building in Christchurch, New Zealand

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William Barnett Armson was an architect, surveyor, engineer in colonial New Zealand. A co-founder of the Canterbury Association of Architects, and an architect to the provincial government, he established the architectural firm of Armson, Collins and Harman in 1870, which remained active until 1993. It was one of the two oldest architectural firms in New Zealand. His most important work was the Bank of New Zealand building in Dunedin.

The Octagon, Christchurch heritage building

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Samuel Farr (architect) New Zealand architect

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  1. 1 2 3 "Search the List | Old Government Building | Heritage New Zealand". www.heritage.org.nz. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
  2. "The architectural heritage of Christchurch. 5. Government Buildings" (PDF). Christchurch City Libraries. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
  3. "Search the List | Canterbury Provincial Government Buildings | Heritage New Zealand". www.heritage.org.nz. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
  4. "Heritage Christchurch Foundation Laid – 1911". Discover The Delights Of Peeling Back History. 1 January 1911. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
  5. "Heritage Christchurch". Heritage Hotels. Retrieved 17 February 2017.
  6. "OGB Cafe & Bar, Christchurch NZ". OGB Bar & Cafe. Retrieved 17 February 2017.