Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission Te Komihana Rūwhenua o Waitaha Canterbury Earthquakes Royal Commission – Te Komihana Rūwhenua o Waitaha

Those who lost relatives and friends in the 22 February earthquake can be assured that there will be a very thorough inquiry into the failure of buildings that resulted in loss of life.
Chair, Justice Mark Cooper

CTV Building Hearing - Overview

As part of the inquiry into the failure of buildings in the Canterbury earthquakes, the Commission held an eight week public hearing about the CTV building collapse beginning 25 June 2012. Three days of closing submissions were heard beginning 5 September 2012.

The intention and purpose of the hearing was to ascertain why the CTV building collapsed, causing such a significant loss of life. This included:

  • The initial building consent issued by the local government authority, Christchurch City Council;
  • The construction of the building and its design;
  • Identification of a structural weakness in 1990;
  • Damage suffered in the September and Boxing Day (December) earthquakes and the evidence of staff in the building about the damage; and
  • The assessment process undertaken, particularly after the September earthquake.


Date Topic

Week 1


25 - 28 June

Building occupants, collapse eye witnesses, damage post-September witnesses, post-collapse witnesses, post-September earthquake assessments

Week 2 


2-5 July 

Post-earthquake assessments, Department of Building and Housing technical investigation 

Week 3 


9-12 July 

Department of Building and Housing technical investigation,  Alan Reay Consultants Ltd collapse evidence

Week 4


16 July 

Alan Reay Consultants Ltd collapse evidence (continued)

Week 5 


23-26 July 

Alan Reay Consultants Ltd collapse evidence (continued), expert technical panels

Week 6 


30 July - 2 August Building design, building permit

Week 7 


6-9 August 

Building design (continued), building permit (continued), code compliance and construction issues 

Week 8 


13-16 August 

Building design (continued), code compliance (continued), concrete, 1990-1991: building retrofit and installation of drag bars and building fire 

5-6 September

Closing submissions

Counsel Appearing

Counsel assisting the Commission

Parties Represented Counsel Organisation
Alan Reay Consultants Hugh Rennie QC barrister
Willie Palmer Buddle Findlay
Kelly Paterson Buddle Findlay
David Harding Michael Kirkland Saunders & Co
Andrew Beachcroft DAC Beachcroft
Geoff Banks Helen Smith Duncan Cotterill
Kate Benson Duncan Cotterill
Grant Wilkinson John Bierre Morgan Coakle
Holmes Consulting Group, John Hare John Hannan DLA Phillips Fox
Murray Mitchell Daniel McLennan barrister
Geoff Jones Daniel McLennan barrister
Alun Wilkie Richard Raymond barrister
Christchurch City Council Duncan Laing Simpson Grierson
Nadine Daines Christchurch City Council
Kelvin Reid barrister
CPG, David Coatsworth, Brian Kehoe Tom Weston QC barrister
Hesketh Henry
Graeme Calvert James Rapley barrister
Russell Simson Dale Lester barrister
David Flewellen Malcolm Wallace barrister
Madras Equities Hugh Matthews White, Fox & Jones
Jackie Frampton White, Fox & Jones
Department of Building and Housing Gregor Allan Crown Law
Tony Scott Andrew Marsh Saunders Robinson Brown