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Opening of new stadium symbol of Christchurch's recovery

News release
March 28, 2012
Opening of new sports stadium symbol of Christchurch's recovery

Major sporting fixtures are back on the agenda for Christchurch as the city celebrates the opening of a new $30m stadium.

Built in record time thanks to a round-the-clock construction effort, the stadium will be the home ground for the successful Super XV rugby franchise, the Crusaders, but will also be available for other sporting codes, outdoor concerts and events. The stadium can hold 18,000 for regular matches, 25,000 for international test matches and 34,000 for concerts.

The stadium was officially opened at the weekend when a capacity crowd of 18,000 packed into the venue to watch the Crusaders narrowly defeat the Cheetahs in their first home game since May 2010.

“It’s fantastic that Christchurch is again in a position to host sporting events of this calibre,” says Christchurch & Canterbury Tourism chief executive Tim Hunter.

“Cantabrians love sport and are passionate about rugby so they have really felt the loss of city’s main sporting and entertainment venue, AMI Stadium, which was badly damaged by last year’s quake.

“The fact that we’ve managed to get a replacement stadium built at Addington in such a short-time period has really lifted people’s spirits and it means that we can again offer our visitors a chance to experience the fun and excitement of first-class rugby,” Mr Hunter says.

“As the Super XV season progresses we’re looking forward to welcoming lots of out-of-town visitors to our new stadium and to showing them how much Christchurch and Canterbury still has to offer.”

The stadium is the first and largest sports facility built in Christchurch since the earthquakes and is being hailed as a symbol of the city’s recovery and rebuild.
It will host rugby union, rugby league and football games, rugby union test matches, community and cultural events, and music concerts. There are 13 corporate boxes at the stadium, along with two merchandising and 20 food and beverage outlets.

The stadium was designed by global sports specialists Populous, which has been instrumental in preparing temporary sporting venues in London for the 2012 Olympics.
It was designed and built to the highest safety standards.

“Projects like the new sports stadium and the Re:Start retail mall should give people a hint of the exciting things that are in store for Christchurch as the rebuild progresses,” Mr Hunter says. “All I can say at this point is watch this space.”


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