30 July 2012
Christchurch CBD rebuild blueprint unveiled
Prime Minister John Key says the new and innovative central city design unveiled in Christchurch today is an exciting next step in the rebuild and recovery of New Zealand’s second-largest city.
Today’s announcement marks the completion of the Christchurch Central Development Unit’s work over the past 100 days, which culminated in the Recovery Plan being released today after being approved by Cabinet.
Mr Key says the redevelopment and rebuild of Christchurch is important not just for residents and businesses, but to the rest of the country.
“Many lives were tragically lost and thousands of homes and buildings destroyed in the earthquake on 22 February last year.
“This redevelopment of the city will be testament to the past as well as an important step into the future.
“The new-look city centre will be home to a variety of attractions. Its central focus will be on the core of the city – it will be an area that will once again be a vibrant hub with business, retail, and residential development as well as relaxation spaces,” Mr Key says.
Christchurch’s CBD will be smaller and bordered by a unique green frame on its eastern boundary, which will connect through to green spaces in the north and south, and linked by a walkway and cycleway to Hagley Park.
A state-of-the art stadium, a metro sports facility and a new convention centre – all within the boundaries of the new and compact CBD – will ensure Christchurch regains its place on the map as an entertaining and attractive city that caters to all.
“We are announcing these anchor projects to provide certainty to the private sector, which is interested in investing in other projects around them such as hotels, restaurants and retail developments,” Mr Key says.
“For those anchor projects where the Government has the primary responsibility such as the hospital redevelopment, justice and emergency precinct and education facilities, we will get on and get them done for the good of the city.”
The funding for the other anchor projects, which are more in the nature of civic assets, such as the stadium, convention centre and metro sports facility, will need to be worked out between the Christchurch City Council and the private sector.
Mr Key says the ideas from the wider community prompted the design of the Papa o Otakaro/Avon River Park, which will see a pedestrian and cycle-focused corridor developed through the city along the banks of the Avon River.
“As a former Cantabrian I am delighted to see this plan for new development and to know construction will soon be underway to rebuild my old hometown.”
Mr Key says the end result will be a new Christchurch, built on the foundation of ideas provided by those who live, work and play there, and adapted to ensure the city can be accessed and enjoyed by all who visit.Tweet
30 July 2012
Investors encouraged to back Christchurch
Prime Minister John Key has welcomed the establishment of Invest Christchurch – a new facilitation service to encourage investment into the new Christchurch CBD.
The new service, which will be part of the Christchurch Central Development Unit, will work with local, national and international investors, businesses and developers to facilitate private sector-led initiatives throughout the new CBD.
“The private sector will ultimately play the biggest role in the redevelopment of Christchurch’s central city so we want to do all we can to make it easier for them to invest in the city,” Mr Key says.
“The welcome mat is being rolled out for domestic and offshore investment in the rebuild of Christchurch, which will be one of the largest construction investment opportunities ever to be seen in New Zealand.
“Across the wider Christchurch region, as much as $30 billion will be invested by the Government, Christchurch City Council and private insurers in the rebuild, and the money is already rolling in.”
The establishment of the new investor-focused service follows the unveiling today of a new and innovative design for central Christchurch.
“The aim of this new design, and the location of associated anchor projects, is to provide certainty to the private sector, which might be interested in investing in other projects around them such as hotels, restaurants and retail developments.
“This new service will help local, national and international investors get their projects off the ground quickly.”
It will also seek private investment for those of the anchor projects announced today that are civic assets, which include parks, a multi-purpose stadium, residential housing and commercial office space and an innovation hub.
“Today marks the formal beginning of the project to make Christchurch one of the best small cities in the world in which to invest and do business,” he said.
“Starting with a focus on local and other New Zealand investors, Invest Christchurch will provide a quality service to help business people make the most of the new opportunities that are fast becoming available in the city.”Tweet
25 July. The joint press conference held today by NZ Prime Minister John Key and Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
I understand this is the first time the conference has been held in New Zealand, so I’d like to extend a warm welcome to those of you who are visiting our country.
Putting my Minister of Tourism hat on for just a moment, I’d like to encourage you to have a good look around while you’re here. I hope you enjoy your stay.
I want to start today by acknowledging the good work ANZSOG does to develop and strengthen leadership in the public sector.
And I want to take a moment to note the late Dr John Paterson, after whom this address is named.
Dr Paterson is recognised as one of Australia’s most talented public servants, who over his career served governments from both sides of the political spectrum with great ability.
Today I want to talk about my Government’s priorities for this term, where public services and public servants fit into those priorities, and what we can learn from the response to the Canterbury earthquakes.
My Government has four priorities this term.
The first is to responsibly manage the Government’s finances.
New Zealand has faced a number of challenges over the past three-and-a-half years, from a recession to the Canterbury earthquakes.
The Government has absorbed much of the cost of these events on its balance sheet, so we can cushion New Zealanders from the worst effects.
But that money has to be paid back.
So we have put a huge amount of effort into making savings and, in particular, into changing some of the long-term term drivers of government spending, so we can get back to surplus over the next few years and start getting our debt down again. Read full article
24 July 2012
PM expresses sorrow at passing of Margaret Mahy
Prime Minister John Key today expressed his sorrow at the passing of Margaret Mahy ONZ, one of New Zealand’s best-loved authors.
“Ms Mahy’s books, short stories and contributions to the New Zealand School Journal have been part of New Zealand children’s lives for generations,” says Mr Key.
“She is widely acknowledged as one of this country’s finest authors, and one of the world’s greatest writers of children’s and young adults’ stories.
“Ms Mahy’s stories resonated with children around the globe – her works were translated into a number of languages, and the accolades she received internationally illustrate her enormous contribution to children’s literature.”
Margaret Mahy was awarded the Order of New Zealand in 1993. She won the Carnegie Medal in 1982 and 1984, making her the first writer outside Britain to receive the award. In 2006 she was awarded the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award for her enduring work.
“I would like to extend my condolences to Ms Mahy’s family and friends at this sad time,” says Mr Key. “I am sure her stories will remain firm favourites among children here and overseas for years to come.”