After the devastating 2011 earthquake, historic Christchurch begins to recover, starting with the pop-up Re:START mall.
The first part of the historic city center of Christchurch to reopen after the earthquake in February 2011 that condemned most of the downtown area, Re:START Mall is a two-block stretch of the old City Mall, a cluster of shops and restaurants rebuilt out of cargo ship containers.
Re:START was completely constructed in under six months, and opened October 29, 2011, at a time when most of the downtown area was still completely inaccessible due to the danger of falling masonry from heavily-damaged skyscrapers. Anchored by Christchurch’s only surviving department store, Ballantynes, the mall launched with 29 stores and a cafe all built out of shipping containers, making it one of the world’s only pop-up malls.
This feature originally appeared in Atlas Obscura.