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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Fixing Dux 'would cost millions'

Fixing Dux 'would cost millions'

Last updated 05:00 17/06/2011
Dux de Lux repairs and strengthening will cost millions of dollars, rather than the $390,000 fix proposed by its owner, the Christchurch Arts Centre Trust Board says.

Board chairman Deane Simmonds said structural repairs to the central-city restaurant and bar would have to be completed "before anyone is allowed near the site".

Owner Richard Sinke was evicted, along with every Arts Centre tenant except one, after the February earthquake badly damaged every historic building in the complex.

As part of his campaign to return to the centre, Sinke commissioned an engineer's report on the quake damage to the Dux de Lux building. The report estimated the bar could be repaired for $390,000, but that estimate did not include a detailed review of drawings or a detailed investigation of internal structures.

Sinke said he would contribute $500,000 to the cost of the repair work in exchange for a rent rebate if he was able to return to the site.

Simmonds said Sinke had underestimated the level of work required.

"Our report was looking at one end of the scale and Richard is at the other. We are talking about millions and he is talking about $400,000," he said.

"Richard's report has not addressed structural issues or the ground reparations. There are major structural issues that have not been covered off.

"The bottom line for us is we are not compromising safety, so we would have to ensure the basics of ground and structure have been covered before anyone is allowed near the site."

Sinke said repairing the Dux de Lux could take longer than his first estimate.

"It is going to take a bit longer than I had hoped," he said.

"My initial report was to bring the Dux de Lux back up to where it was before the September earthquake. We always said it would require more work.

"It depends on the level of strengthening they want to bring it up to. It will take a considerable amount of time to bring it up to code. How we bring it up to code is the question. My report was meant to get things moving along."

Simmonds and Sinke will meet today to discuss the engineering reports.

Sinke's engineering report has been peer-reviewed by Arts Centre engineers. Simmonds said the report did not address quake-strengthening or land repairs.

"The Sinke report has understated the importance of earthquake-strengthening and the ground repairs required," he said.

"The building would be classified as less than 30 per cent of code and the mandatory requirements the council has specified. Patrons would be at risk if that work had not been completed.

"If you want to open, you would have to restrengthen the building because the council are requiring that."

- The Press


Man Beaver   #23   01:58 pm Jun 18 2011
I can understand some comments from both sides of this argument, but I err to one side, that of the ocupier of the Dux, considering the plans that the Arts Centre had in mind prior to the earthquake in September. I also wonder why some are commenting on Mr. Sinkes attiptude to opening the Dux, considering that the casino is in the 'red zone' yet it is open, so why can the Dux not be 'fixed' so it can open? Let Mr Sinke spend the money to make the repairs and that can be taken off his rental?
Is the Art Center management still looking at these plans to 'bugger up' the Arts Center?
Also, if Mr Sinke wants to continue sucking money out of us through takings over the bar, why then does he put up and shut up and set up a bar in another location?
Eve Flain   #22   01:03 am Jun 18 2011
The Dux is special, I understand, because it once housed Christchurch's trainee teachers (the pragmatic, intellectual heart of our city). I love the Dux, but it has gone - so desperately sad but true - time to embrace the new..... I love the Dux (notably the world's best ever rice salad) but we need to move with the many not few. Eve Flain - Burnside born 1966 - Melbourne, Australia exisiting since 1989
Hmmmmm   #21   11:22 pm Jun 17 2011
It isn't just about getting the Dux up and running - it's the whole Arts Centre - are you entirely sure you can accept the word of a board that until recently wanted to substantially alter the whole ethos of the centre to open an extension of the Music School?
Interesting how they are throwing so many obstacles in the way now. Waiting for the announcement that to 'save' the Centre they are going to re-visit the whole proposal. Only without the objections from the current tenants.
getting sick of somebody now   #20   06:13 pm Jun 17 2011
Along with others #16 Structural Engineer makes some good points. I'm beginning to get sick to death of Mr Sinke's publicity seeking and I wish the media could ignore him. He seems to have the 'Hone Syndrome' (special treatment). If the arts centre can be rebuilt his business would have been well down the highly desirable list anyway, except perhaps for those who like getting boozed and eating crap food, for which there are many other outlets. If Richard is bored he could come and help with the liq'faction.
Kate   #19   04:53 pm Jun 17 2011
The Dux had it's day years ago. Dirty, tired and over rated. Why all the fuss about getting it up and running??
Bryan   #18   03:54 pm Jun 17 2011
The Dux is one of those rareties, somewhere that is more than the sum of it's parts. Not just a restaurant in an old building, but one that's been around long enough to have it's own history. Setting it up in another location will make it just another clone restaurant ala Cardrona Ale House.
The board's engineer's assertions about the amount of remedial work required, must be ringing huge alarm beels for every CBD tenant and building owner.
Jason   #17   03:00 pm Jun 17 2011
If Deane Simmonds says there is isues with the land itself then that means the whole central city is going to have the same isues. If its all mushed up under the Dux then don't you think the council should also say the rest of the cities land is the same. So when EQC and your insurance company tell you this is how much its going to cost to fix your house or building then based on Deane Simmonds information we should be adding millions to what we are told by the money people!!!!
structural engineer   #16   02:02 pm Jun 17 2011
Richard Sinke needs to stop being selfish. Readers need to read his statements more carefully. He is offering to front the repair (and get it back via rental rebates). Ultimately, at the end of the day - he wants the Christchurch ratepayers (via the Art Center Trust) to quickly repair his property so that he can restart his business.
What about other pubs/bars? What about other businesses? Mr Sinke's Dux is so special? Honestly? Go get another location. Stop feeling so self-important. If he is so sick of his landlord - move out! Why is the Art Center Trust gotta be hold ransom to one tenant? The trust hsa the responsibility to ensure the place is safe for public, as well as is preserved for future use.
Rush to reopen it without earthquake strengthening - and we will end up losing the whole building in the next aftershock. Not to mention putting Richard's staff into grave danger. Of course, mr Sinke is not serving the beers himself.
jason   #15   12:28 pm Jun 17 2011
@ Gordon #4 - I'm getting pretty sick of people like yourself thinking that if something does not directly relate to YOUR problem then its not worth doing. That bar represents the livelihoods of several people and is enjoyed by thousands. Why do you think your situation is any more important? I'm sure that if you were in Richard Sinkes situation you would be just as keen to get it fixed.
black   #14   12:02 pm Jun 17 2011
who cares about the Dux.. it was always a rip off vegetarian slop hole after Dick took it over anyway. Spend the money on housing.
David   #13   11:18 am Jun 17 2011
With such widely divergent reports from engineers, Brownlee, Key etc. will Christchurch ever get rebuilt? Committees and boards and CERA will still be 'discussing' come 4 September 2011, or will it be 22 Feb 2013?
amanda   #12   11:15 am Jun 17 2011
One presumes that Mr Simmonds means earthquake strengthening within the whole of the Art Centre, so following that logic it would not be worth repairing the Clock Tower or the Great Hall unless they've had ground reparation!
mjg   #11   10:58 am Jun 17 2011
Agreed Mike#7 At least Mr Sinke has done some work to progress the situation. Christchurch Arts Centre Trust Board's claim the work will cost millions seems to be picked out the air. Getting the Arts Centre open is going to be a huge job. How do you get a big job done, break it down into smaller pieces.
wiri   #10   10:50 am Jun 17 2011
I'd respectfully suggest to that Richard has had plenty of publicity for the new dux de lux he is going to open somewhere else. I assume he never seriously believed the low fix-Arts-Centre-site cost in the first place, although the millions in the latest report is suprisingly high to me and could be a slight over-estimate.
Ron.   #9   10:31 am Jun 17 2011
One essential item always seems to get left out of these arguments is - can the project be re-insured? Without Public Liability Insurance, staff cover and building and chattles cover you are not going to be able to get up and go are you? Ron.
Jane   #8   10:15 am Jun 17 2011
I agree with Moriarty. If its going to cost millions to restore something and this goes for the whole Art Centre we would be better off putting the money into something that is built from scratch and know that it is structually sound.
Mike   #7   09:57 am Jun 17 2011
This is a very odd situation. Sinke has an engineers report and $500,000 he is willing to put in. I'd call that pretty good. The Arts Centre Board do not appear to have checked the Dux and are speaking generally about issues which MAY be a problem.
Sinke's offer is an excellent one, shouldn't this at least be looked into before dismissing it out of hand? Why is the Board acting like this?
T   #6   09:37 am Jun 17 2011
Richard Sinke just needs to get on with it and find another location instead of this. I am over hearing from him, he has always had a feeling of his own self importance. Lets not give him any more publicity. He just needs to get a new site like 1000's of other business owners in CHCH.
SK   #5   09:29 am Jun 17 2011
Agree with #2 - rebuild from scratch if it is cheaper. The appearance of any building can be recreated using modern, safe, methods and materials. And everyone should remember it's not just Dux fans that are missing their favourite social haunts. Thousands had a 'local' that is now out of action due to the quake, and it is just as upsetting and sad for them as it is for those who miss their beloved Dux. The good news is there are places within or on the four aves that offer a 'local', relaxed place to talk and see familiar faces. Hang in there everyone!
Gordon   #4   09:23 am Jun 17 2011
Who gives a ... about the DUX what about our homes.....
Dave   #3   09:01 am Jun 17 2011
Just get on with it!!!
Moriarty   #2   08:51 am Jun 17 2011
If the Dux 'would cost millions' to repair, then it is not worth repairing. A building of this size and style could be built from scratch as new for less. As an historic building, the main appeal is in its architectural style, its historic use and that it 'fits' the Arts Centre site. Hoiwever internally totally, and externally to an extent, the building has through modification over the years been so badly compromised, to spend millions to restore it would be a gross waste.

Nikki   #1   08:22 am Jun 17 2011
I think most of us who read the Press figured out that the earlier report was grossly underestimating the cost for the purposes of advancing the DDL owner's agenda. I'm sure a lot of us would welcome Mr Sinke opening a new DDL somewhere else.

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