Another chapter of Christchurch’s earthquake recovery has closed, with the final tranche of residential red zone land being transferred from government to local ownership.
The occasion, which also ends the Crown’s post-earthquake responsibilities in Christchurch, was marked with a small event at Dallington Landing today, hosted by Mayor Phil Mauger and Minister for Land Information Damien O’Connor.
Mayor Mauger says the Council now having full ownership of the former residential red zones is a significant milestone.
“The ownership of the Brooklands, Southshore, South New Brighton and Port Hills regeneration areas transferred to the Council from 2020. However, the sheer size and complexities of the 5,500 property titles in the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor meant that Toitū Te Whenua Land Information New Zealand had to reconfigure the land in tranches that it progressively handed across to us,” says Mayor Mauger.
“It’s an exciting day for Christchurch to have complete ownership of the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor. We took over the management of this 602-hectare open space in 2020, and since then, and in collaboration with the communities and stakeholders, we’ve started to bring the vision and objectives of the Regeneration Plan to life.”
Land Information Minister Damien O’Connor acknowledged the courage and resilience of everyone connected to land that was red zoned following the Canterbury earthquakes.
“It has been a long road to today, which marks a significant step forward in delivering on the Government’s commitment to returning to local leadership in Christchurch,” he said.
“It’s also a great example of the successful partnership between the Crown and Council. During its time as kaitiaki of red-zoned land, Toitū Te Whenua / LINZ facilitated more than 2,800 temporary land uses, including about 150 short-term projects and events."
A swathe of planting days over the past two seasons have seen Council rangers, community groups and volunteers plant tens of thousands of natives across the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor (OARC).
Grants from the Christchurch Earthquake Appeals Trust have also seen the Dallington Landing and three pedestrian bridges completed.
“The bridges at Medway Street, Snell Place and Avondale enhance community connections across the river and put in place the infrastructure for the City to Sea Pathway,” says Mayor Mauger.
“Work on the 11km City to Sea Pathway from Barbadoes St to New Brighton will begin this summer.
“The upper and lower terraces of Avon Park will also begin a significant transformation in the coming months, and Council staff continue to progress plans for a new flatwater sports hub and riverside landing at Kerrs Reach.”
For more information on the OARC visit ccc.govt.nz/oarc