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Central City Football Pitch Relocates to the East

Central City Football Pitch Relocates to the East

A football club in the east of Christchurch has a new $40,000 pitch.

The Coastal Spirit Football Club approached the Rebuild Christchurch Foundation last December to express an interest in the Nike Football in the Gap football pitch which was due to be relocated this month.

The project organised by Rebuild Christchurch in association with Nike NZ was the first of its type in the world in that there has never been a temporary football field in the middle of a demolition zone in a CBD.

Foundation head Deon Swiggs says the pitch has now been moved from what was always going to be a temporary location.

“We are so pleased to be able to help the Coastal Spirit club particularly as they have a large number of senior and junior members who play all year round and they lost their training facilities in the earthquakes,” he says. “The field will soon be erected by the club and will remain a lasting legacy to the transition of the city.”

Operating for 4 months in the heart of the city, the field was used by local schools in the area, demolition workers and many families, as a space to go to and re-engage with the CBD. There are very few family activities in the CBD.

Swiggs says the feedback from people who used the soccer pitch in the CBD was phenomenal and comments on the Foundation’s Facebook page include:

Toby Johnston What are the chances of another one being put up in another location within the CBD? I know these things cost money but it's been great having it there and with the rebuild ongoing it'll be a bit disappointing losing it.

Jane Alford Oh that's so sad, we take our kids there every week, they will be gutted ' soccer in the gap' is gone.

Julie Simovic Hopefully they will keep something close to the city. We were visitors from Australia to your city in Dec & did the Red Bus Tour. The hostess spoke about how it had helped the city workers get back to some normality. Thank you Red Bus Tours for an insight into your city then & now. Best of luck to all the workers, the local people trying to rebuild your CITY OF CHRISTCHURCH,

“As a result of the feedback and support for a pitch in the CBD, we will start talking to a number of organisations to see if there is any possibility that something can be done in the CBD in a reasonably short timeframe, temporarily for a year or more, to continue on with re-engaging our residents with the central city using positive activities” says Swiggs.

He adds that thanks must go to Nike for the initial funding to get the project off the ground, CERA for organising the site and the logistics, the 3 land owners for the use of the land, the gold level sponsor BuildTech for the benches and land preparation, and to all the volunteers who again have helped this happen and kept the ground maintained.


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