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Fri July 30 2021

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Christchurch to get a new arena

3 Mar 20 New Zealand government ministers have approved proposals for a trio of post-earthquake regeneration projects in Christchurch, including a new arena.

Christchurch City Council submitted investment cases late last year for the Canterbury Multi-Use Arena, the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor red zone and road projects.

To get the Arena project rolling, the government is committing NZ$6m for early enabling works on the site.

Minister for Greater Christchurch regeneration Megan Woods said that the approval marks another significant milestone in the city’s regeneration and transition to local leadership. “These projects are hugely significant to the city’s ongoing regeneration and overall future, so it’s a great step to approve the three investment cases,” she said. “These will help set our city up to become an even more vibrant and exciting place for people to live, work and visit.”

Woods said that approval of the arena’s investment case demonstrates a strong signal that the government has confidence in the project and its importance to regeneration. “The Arena, once completed, will spark and develop business confidence and growth by drawing people into the central city,” she said.

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Meanwhile, the Ministers have also agreed to provide NZ$40m to the council for regeneration projects in the OARC red zone, building on a regeneration plan approved in August 2019, and NZ$40m for road projects that are specifically linked to regeneration needs.

"This is great news for Christchurch and those communities in the East who were still feeling the effects of the quakes but who have been so passionate about regeneration of the OARC red zone and improvement of roads,” said Woods. “It means that Council can get on and make some early progress with regeneration in these areas.”

Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel Lianne Dalziel is pleased at the decision to release an initial NZ$6m in funding for early works at the multi-use arena site. “It means we can push ahead with the detailed site investigation work and remove old underground services so that when the main works contractor is appointed they can hit the ground running,” she said. “Both the Crown and the Council want this project to progress as quickly as possible. Our goal is to get construction under way next year so the arena can open in 2024, allowing Christchurch to reclaim its position as New Zealand’s sporting and cultural capital.”

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