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Irresistible Challenge for Consortium

Plenary Conventions NZ – Media release

Embargoed until 2pm Thursday 7 August 2014

Thursday 7 August 2014

Irresistible Challenge for Consortium

Plenary Conventions NZ has today been confirmed by the New Zealand Government as the preferred development consortium and investor for the new Christchurch Convention Centre Precinct and the consortium has a clear vision of delivering a new landmark for the city.

Plenary Conventions NZ is a consortium made up of international public infrastructure specialist Plenary Group and two of New Zealand and Christchurch’s largest property investors, Carter Group and Ngai Tahu Property.

The consortium will formally enter into a master planning and development phase where it will work with the Government on the detail of the precinct ahead of construction.

Plenary Group Executive Director, Mr Paul Crowe says the consortium was created to bring together the very best local knowledge and experience and to combine it with international design and delivery expertise.

“Our team at Plenary is relishing the opportunity to work alongside our respective colleagues at Carter Group and Ngai Tahu Property who have and continue to be long term investors in the development of Christchurch.”

Occupying the area between Cathedral Square, Colombo Street, Armagh Street and the Avon River, the new Christchurch Convention Centre Precinct is one of the most critical and exciting anchor projects in the rebuild of the city.

“The delivery of the Christchurch Convention Centre Precinct is an irresistible challenge for Plenary Conventions NZ. This is a rare opportunity in all of our professional lives to be part of such an important catalyst project,” says Mr Crowe.

The partnership of Plenary, Carter Group and Ngai Tahu Property will deliver:

• A completely integrated conference precinct embedded in the daily life of Christchurch;

• Investment in a mixed use precinct of commercial development in tourism, retail, office and residential;

• And an investment in a fully integrated hotel.

Today’s announcement that the consortium is the preferred partner is another step in a journey that commenced many months ago when an expression of interest was submitted in November 2012.

Mr Crowe says there was still some way to go in the process but every member of the consortium remained totally committed to delivering a new landmark for the city.

“The new Precinct will present itself to the national and international business community as New Zealand’s pre-eminent convention and meeting destination.

“This new landmark for Christchurch must reflect the aspirations and identity of the city as a resilient international city: a gateway to the South Island which is one of the world’s most attractive tourism destinations.”

“We are committed to delivering a world-class Convention Centre Precinct that will attract business, events, and conferences from around the world,” Mr Crowe said.

The consortium believes that the business tourism generated by the Christchurch Convention Centre precinct will provide an economic shot in the arm for the city.

Plenary Group has a proven track record having delivered the Melbourne Convention Centre on time and on budget; a facility that now adds some $180 million to the Victorian economy each year.

The Christchurch Convention Centre Precinct will provide a hub of business activity and entertainment, linked to the whole city via river walkways, public transport, pedestrian and bicycle networks.

Philip Carter of Carter Group says that importantly this must be an investment for all Cantabrians and we believe it will become a place to gather and celebrate, providing a vibrant corridor between the Avon River and Cathedral Square. “Today’s announcement will give the city a further boost of confidence and will encourage other investors and developers back into the CBD,” says Mr Carter.

Ngai Tahu Property Chief Executive Tony Sewell says the consortium partnership is a strong one with aligned values around intergenerational investment and taking a long-term approach to projects supporting the prosperity for the city and region.


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