The more I think about the Napier earthquake, the more it seems like the result of a voodoo spell that someone conjured up in the 1930s. Let us examine the evidence.
There’s a relatively new town, but it’s been settled on a bit of swampy land by the sea. The town is running out of land to build on. There’s been a bit of land reclaimed from the sea, but that costs money and they can’t really afford to reclaim any more. The existing town streets were designed before the invention of the motor car, so now they’re a bit narrow and not ideal. Wouldn’t it be great if a) more land became available to be built upon, and b) if the downtown area could be rebuilt to fit the needs of a modern society?
So there’s an earthquake and the area is thrust two metres above sea level, making all the swampy, lagoony land and the entire inner harbour dryish, providing more than enough space for the town to grow into a city; and most of the downtown buildings fell down, meaning that the streets could be widened and the area rebuilt with cool, modern designs.
Surely someone’s great-grandpappy sold his soul to the Devil to arrange this.