The building was designed by Shigeru Ban as a temporary replacement for the city's former Anglican cathedral, which was destroyed by the earthquake that struck the city in February 2011.
With an expected lifespan of around 50 years, it will serve the community until a more permanent cathedral can be constructed.
The building features a triangular profile constructed from 98 equally sized cardboard tubes. These surround a coloured glass window made from tessellating triangles, decorated with images from the original cathedral's rose window.
The main hall has the capacity to accommodate up to 700 people for events and concerts, plus eight steel shipping containers house chapels and storage areas below.
Photo credits: Bridgit Anderson.