The announcement by the Government that the Crown and the Council have reached agreement to conduct detailed design work on a Stadium for Christchurch is fantastic news for the Canterbury region, says Leeann Watson, Chief Executive of the Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce.
“The commitment to a large capacity enclosed arena is very welcome news. This facility is an important piece of infrastructure that will help bring major events such as concerts, trade shows and major sports matches back to Christchurch.”
The guarantee of a venue for these visitor-generating events means business can now plan with certainty their future investments, said Ms Watson.
“The lack of clarity about the future of a stadium facility has been difficult for the visitor and hospitality sector. Hopefully this will mean we will see confidence increase and investment decisions being made.”
The Chamber will now be focusing on making sure the timeline for the Stadium is brought forward in the Council’s LTP process.
“We advocated for a Multi-Use Arena in our written submission. We are also keen to understand the funding plans for the stadium and look forward to further announcements in the near future.”
The announcement that the design of the Metro Sports Facility is ready to go to market for costing is also very pleasing said Leeann Watson.
“This is an important facility, for both community sports and for recreation users around the city. For instance, we have not had access to an indoor 50m pool in the city since the earthquakes. Swimmers have had to travel to train in full size indoor pools.”
The Chamber has welcomed the way costs have been reduced on the project.
“Using a more functional approach to design and focusing less on the architectural merits of the structure for a practical community facility is most welcome. I’m also pleased to see a focus on procurement methods,” said Ms Watson.