One of the architects appointed to help oversee the post-earthquake redevelopment of Christchurch says it may be rebuilt to a lower scale and quality than residents would like.
Discussions are being held about what types of buildings will replace some of the historic ones that have been destroyed.
City councillor Chrissie Williams says there are tensions about the redevelopment in central Christchurch, with people wondering whether the heritage of the area will be restored.
The Historic Places Trust says it is important that the heritage and the ambience of the city not be lost.
The chairman of the Canterbury branch of the Institute of Architects, Jasper van der Lingen, says he also has concerns about the rebuilding, with the biggest fear being that some building sites will be filled with carparks.
Mr van der Lingen says, however, that it's hard to find economic justification for rebuilding on the same scale and quality as in the past.
He says he remains optimistic about the city's redevelopment.