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Govt plan for community input into residential red zone

17 April 2014

Mayor welcomes Government’s plan for community input into future of residential red zone

Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel has welcomed Prime Minister John Key’s announcement today of a community participation process for the public to have a say on the future use of the residential red zone.

In making the announcement Mr Key said Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee would be working with the Mayors of Christchurch and Waimakairiri, Ngai Tahu and other agencies to design the community participation process.

“I am genuinely excited about the prospect of engaging with the wider community about what will be an incredible asset,” said Mayor Lianne Dalziel.

“Our young people especially have already shown an ability to think creatively about using the spaces that have appeared in the CBD and elsewhere. I expect they will be just as excited about the opportunities the future of the residential red zone presents.”

The Mayor said that although the successful Share an Idea-based public consultation process being used for the proposed new City Library would be ideal for including in the community participation process announced by the Prime Minister, there were also groups that had clearly emerged as leaders in this area.

“These include the Avon-Otakaro Network which has already come up with amazing ideas that we will be able to explore more fully with the wider community. I would expect these groups to take a strong leadership role in the community engagement process.

“I believe the regeneration of the natural environment will help lead the city’s recovery.

“This would have huge eco-tourism potential along with learning experiences for children, and interpretation centres explaining the history of the river and the surrounding wetlands, their native plants and the birdlife they already attract.

“These areas could all be connected with walkways and cycleways.

“The announcement today makes it clear that the city will be able to use some of the red zone land to move stopbanks, shift roads, and find a more environmentally sensitive way to manage stormwater,” said the Mayor.

“This would be a huge benefit to the city as a whole.

“But what is important is people taking the opportunity of the upcoming community participation process to think about uses for the residential red zone that will contribute to Christchurch's sense of identity.

"I spoke to someone recently who said we shouldn’t think of this as the ‘city to the sea’ – it is also bringing the east back into the city,” said the Mayor.

ENDS

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