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Replacing a much-loved pre-quake Christchurch icon and dovetailing with historic buildings and busy laneways, Stranges Building has restored bustle and grace to this popular city niche

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The new Stranges Building, erected on the same central location, is owned by City Group Holdings, a subsidiary of KPI Rothschild Property Group

Replacing a much-loved pre-quake Christchurch icon and dovetailing with historic buildings and busy laneways, Stranges Building has restored bustle and grace to this popular city niche

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The original Stranges Building, centrally located and razed by the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010 and 2011, had been home to Australasia's largest department store, established in 1863. It was an icon for the city – loved for its architecture, society, and shopping.

The new Stranges Building, erected on the same central location, is owned by City Group Holdings, a subsidiary of KPI Rothschild Property Group – owned by Shaun Stockman and brothers Dean and Grant Marshall. Stockman, managing director, says the company had been very fond of the original building and had purchased the property twice.

"As owners, we wanted to replace the iconic building we'd lost with something equally worthy.

"The new building was designed by Sheppard and Rout Architects to meet 188% of the new building code. It consists of three levels, with an oval core. This core is crucial to the building's strength, as is the prominent structure."

Lead architect Jasper van der Lingen says the corner building's steel structure is exposed to highlight its strength in the post-quake environment.

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"The glass facade is an abstract representation of the old heritage buildings that lined Lichfield St and the dark steel framing even curves down to the ground, referencing the old brick arch that was the entry to the original building," says the architect.

While offices occupy the upper levels – the top floor is tenanted by the builder, Leighs Construction – the lower level has café-bars, including Lower 9th Diner, Nucleus, Orleans, and Strange & Co. All venues open into new laneways and a courtyard. This bustling and lively precinct makes the new Stranges Building a leading light in the city rebuild.

See more online at:www.kpirothschild.co.nz

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