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Hearings Panel supports Redcliffs land swap

Hearings Panel supports Redcliffs land swap

A Hearings Panel will recommend the Christchurch City Council swaps land with the Ministry of Education so it can relocate Redcliffs School.

Since the 22 February 2011 earthquake students and staff from Redcliffs School have been based at the van Asch Deaf Education Centre in Sumner because of concerns about the stability of the cliffs behind their school in Main Road, Redcliffs.

In October 2016 the Education Ministry announced it would not re-open Redcliffs School and that it would instead look to rebuild the school on a new site.
It subsequently approached the Council to ask if it would consider exchanging Redcliffs Park, in Celia Street, for the Redcliffs Primary School site as it felt the park was the most suitable site for the new school.

In May the Council agreed to consult the public about the proposed land swap.
It received about 850 written submissions and heard in person from 23 submitters including Redcliffs School students, the Redcliffs School Board of Trustees, the Friends of Redcliffs Park, and the Ministry of Education.

Today the Hearings Panel appointed to consider the submissions decided to recommend the Council agree to the land swap.

The Hearings Panel noted in its recommendations a number of steps that should also be taken as part of land swap. Its recommendations will be considered by the Council at its meeting on 7 September.

Deputy Mayor Andrew Turner, who chaired the Hearings Panel, said one of the clear messages that came through during the submission process was that the Redcliffs community wanted an end to the uncertainty.

“They have lived with uncertainty over the fate of the school for several years now and they just want a clear path forward,’’ Cr Turner said.

“After reading the many submissions and listening to what the submitters have told us, the panel's view is that it is in the best interests of the Redcliffs community to allow the proposed land swap to go ahead. Therefore that is what we will be recommending to the Council.’’

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