A bridge to nowhere or will Brighton re-a-pier? exploring community desire for the resurrection of a symbol
journal contributionposted on 02.11.2017, 04:48 by Morgan, Damian
A new pier has recently been constructed in the Christchurch suburb of New Brighton, located in New Zealand’s South Island. This structure was built on the site occupied for some 70 years by a former pier. The fundraising momentum for the new pier was maintained by the efforts of a number of dedicated New Brighton residents over some thirty years following the original pier’s closure. Conceptualised through a geographic and historical overview, the relationship between the original pier and the new pier is explored from the perspective of long-time community members. From this, it is argued that the symbolic meaning of the new pier does not derive from a desire to bring back a nostalgic past, but rather from the aim to again place New Brighton as a focal point of Christchurch. In conclusion, the new pier’s ability to bequeath new memories and myths to future generations is reasoned to eclipse its planned role as a facilitator of commercial tourism development.