Fletcher Construction will run the Earthquake Commission's (EQC) project management office to oversee the rebuild after the Canterbury earthquake, a contract worth around $1 billion.

It would coordinate and manage building repairs valued at $10,000 to $100,000, Earthquake Recovery manager Gerry Brownlee said.

EQC claims over $100,000 would be handled by commercial insurers in accordance with their policies.

"I'd like to thank all parties who tendered for this vitally important role, and congratulate Fletcher Construction on being chosen to coordinate the moderate to serious repairs necessary on about 50,000 homes in Canterbury."

Fletcher Construction, a subsidiary of Fletcher Building, said a team would meet with EQC people in Christchurch today for an initial briefing.

Work would begin on establishing systems and setting priorities on Monday.

Labour MP Clayton Cosgrove welcomed Fletcher Constructions appointment but said local sub-contractors and tradespeople should not be overlooked.

"The re-construction of our province presents a prime opportunity to provide work both locally qualified tradespeople and those engaged in apprenticeships."

He said he would seek a written guarantee from Mr Brownlee that local workers would be offered reconstruction opportunities.

Maori Party MP Rahui Katene also welcomed today's appointment and voiced her hope local tradespeople would be involved.

"I don't want to be looking at increased unemployment rates for our city's tradespeople next year, especially when billions of dollars worth of work is being created in their backyard."

A geotechnical report on land damaged in the quake was completed and would be released next week.

Mr Brownlee had spent the day briefing Canterbury councils on the report, Radio New Zealand reported.

The majority of people would be able to repair their land, those with the worst damage would be contacted by phone next week.

Fewer than 20 properties would need extra measures to be repaired.

"The underlying message is that you could virtually rebuild on all of the land, there may be some where the economics of it don't stack up, so we'll work back from that point with people are those properties emerge," Mr Brownlee said.

Those properties were likely to be ones where extreme damage had occurred in a small area.

The EQC had settled 2500 damage claims and had paid out about $48m.

Mr Brownlee said there was still a large number of people who had not made claims.

- NZPA