Some red-zoned properties could be made safe - Dyson

5:16 pm on 14 September 2012

Residents on the Christchurch Port Hills whose properties have just been red-zoned still believe their homes can be made safe from rock fall.

The last 37 properties in the Horotane Valley and on Bridle Path Road at risk of falling rocks have received their notice to be red-zoned.

The owners had been kept waiting for a decision even though 121 others in the area were zoned red in August.

Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee says the decision was delayed so specialists could consider whether there was a way to deal with the risk of rock falls.

But Port Hills Community spokesperson Simon Langer believes many homes can be saved by rock protection fences and wants the authority to release geotechnical information so residents can plan ways to remain in their homes.

Port Hills resident Roland Logan says geotechnical experts indicated that remediation is possible and cost-effective.

Mr Logan says if a zoning review does not bring a satisfactory outcome, he will seek a judicial review and fight the Government in the courts for the right to stay in his Bridle Path Road home.

The Labour MP for Christchurch's Port Hills, Ruth Dyson, also says some properties in the area recently red-zoned could have been saved.

Ms Dyson says the Government looked at and rejected widespread action across neighbourhoods, but did not look at whether individual properties could be saved.

Some could be made safe with fences and other protection, and residents are frustrated they are getting no help to do that, she says.