Drilling is now under way at the Canterbury Arena site as part of early work to fast-track the project.
Geotechnical investigations began this week to determine the condition of the land as part of the Investment Case being prepared for the Arena. In total, 81 separate tests will be undertaken to give detailed information across the entire site.
The information will allow the Investment Case to consider the most favourable areas for construction, assess options for the arena layout, develop conceptual designs for the form of the arena and its foundations, and evaluate any uncertainties related to the ground conditions.
Greater Christchurch Regeneration Minister Megan Woods says the work underway this week fulfils the promise to get the project moving.
“The message from people who attended our arena workshop in October was to get started. We heard this call and we’re cracking on with the work needed to get the site ready and get the Investment Case fit for purpose.
“Early work will ensure we have the best information right from the start to feed-in to the design process. We know that similar ground conditions exist across the city, from other work already underway.
“These tests will help fill in the gaps and provide robust information for the planning process. We’ll be discussing the findings of this early work as part of ongoing workshops and forums with key community and interest groups to ensure we get an arena that meets the needs of our region.”
Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel says progress on the project will provide another boost for the city and wider region.
“The opportunities that this project will enable upon completion will make an enormous difference to the city and the region.
“We’ll see more enabling work carried out over coming months as the Investment Case progresses, so that the project can get underway as soon as possible and not suffer delays due to ground preparations not being completed.”
The Council has committed $253 million towards the cost of the new arena. The Government has ear-marked a $220 million contribution from the $300 million Christchurch Regeneration Acceleration Facility. Its contribution will be confirmed following completion of the Investment Case in mid-2019.
The $220 million earmarked by the Government is in addition to the $87 million the Crown has spent on the land for the arena site.
The Investment Case now under way will help decide exactly what the arena looks like, what activities it will host, its positioning and a range of other technical and design details. All of this work will be done in collaboration with the people and groups who will use it most. Various opportunities are being created for interest groups to get involved in the process, share information and offer ideas.
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