In addition to the impending relocation of Avonside Girls’ and Shirley Boy’s to the former QEII site, as well as the construction of the Eastern Sports and Recreation Centre, it’s exciting to read about the next new project in our backyard.
The Pūkeko Centre is an exciting new community-led development in the heart of Parklands. The multi-use sports and recreation hub on the site of the Parklands Bowling Club will provide indoor and outdoor facilities for a range of local clubs, groups and organisations. Stage 1 of the development is due to be completed in late 2017.
It involves the relocation of two buildings from the former Freeville School – the Modern Learning Studio and the School Hall – onto the Parklands Bowling Club site in Chadbury Street.
These two ideally suited and good quality buildings were previously earmarked for demolition but have generously been made available to us by the Ministry of Education. We are thrilled to be able to put them to good use for the benefit of the wider Parklands community!
The completed centre will provide a range of options for indoor and outdoor recreation and social activity including shared clubrooms, meeting rooms, catering facilities, hall, ample parking, bowling greens and all-weather courts for netball, futsal and tennis.
Nearly seven years after the earthquakes, it’s heart-warming to see this grass-roots effort come to fruition. The idea of re-purposing modern buildings from the former Freeville School is to be commended. It’s yet another example of Christchurch’s resilient recovery!
It’s been a great start to 2017 for the north-east with the council breaking ground for the construction of the new QEII Recreation and Sport Centre on Tuesday.
Rebuild Christchurch reports:
The new centre will include leisure and training pools, as well as a hydroslide, water adventure playground, steamroom and sauna, fitness centre and a café.
Mayor Dalziel and Cr East led a sod-turning ceremony that included the handing over of a sapling in conjunction with Te Ngāi Tūāhuriri. The ceremony set the stage for Apollo Projects to begin work on the site in earnest.
“The new QEII Recreation and Sport Centre will be an outstanding asset which will see the return of swimming and fitness amenities to QEII Park,” Mayor Dalziel says.
“Today’s ground-breaking ceremony for the centre marks a new beginning for the east and will become the heart of this community,” she says.
The new facility is scheduled to open in mid-2018, and will be joined by the relocated Avonside Girls’ and Shirley Boys’ High Schools, which are scheduled to open in 2019.
Speaking to Avonside Girls’ principal Sue Hume at a recent senior school graduation it was inspiring to hear the excitement in her voice as planning for the new public private partnership (PPP) ramps up with the focus on breaking ground at the beginning of 2017’s second quarter. Not only does the system provide for greater hands-on input, the resulting facilities are going to be far superior to what has been available in the past. Having this educational/public sports and recreation hub established on the former QEll site will unquestionably be a massive asset in the east for many years to come.
It’s definitely exciting times for the north-east with a proliferation of new residential development, state of the art educational facilities being constructed and the massive expansion of Burwood Hospital. The flow on effects to residential property values in the local area are likely to be significant.
Some great news from the Christchurch City Council:
A programme to get Kiwi kids out into nature has just got more exciting, with Travis Wetland the latest destination to be added to the Kiwi Guardians programme.
The Toyota Kiwi Guardians programme (external link) , championed by the Department of Conservation, aims to get city families out into nature by encouraging kids to find hidden codes at parks and nature reserves around the city.
The codes can then be entered into a website and the children receive a Kiwi Guardian medal for each code found.
DOC’s Christchurch Ranger Annabelle Studholme said a new Kiwi Guardian site had been placed at Travis Wetland last month, an exciting new addition to go alongside five other sites launched around Christchurch earlier this year.
“Research has demonstrated that children can establish lifelong connections to nature if they actively engage with it between the ages of 6-10.
“The idea allows young people to have ownership over our conservation land—to feel part of it and want to care for it into the future. It’s also about getting outside and having lots of fun!”
DOC had established five other Kiwi Guardians sites around Christchurch including at Godley Head, the Little River Trail, Ōtamahua Quail Island, Riccarton Bush and the Rod Donald Hut near Port Levy Saddle.
Families could download maps before visiting the area and while enjoying an outing in nature, hunt for hidden codes to earn medals.
“The Kiwi Guardians programme has been developed by DOC in partnership with Toyota and local land owners and managers. It highlights family-friendly activities at specific sites that support kids to engage their senses, take risks and, ultimately, earn themselves a medal in the outdoors. The goal is to turn our kiwi kids into guardians of the land and sea.”
Christchurch City Council Regional Parks Manager Kay Holder said the Kiwi Guardians programme was a great excuse to get out of the house and into nature as the weather begins to warm up.
“We know kids benefit in so many ways from interacting with nature, and we’re delighted to see another site added to the Kiwi Guardians programme in Christchurch. Travis Wetland has always been a favourite with the kids, especially the bird hideout where you can watch nature at play. We hope the Kiwi Guardians programme will motivate more to come out and discover how fabulous it is for themselves, and then maybe be motivated to help care for it.”
This is one of the things I love about living in the north-east. The wetlands, Bottle Lake Forest and the beach are all so close by. Embrace the lifestyle on offer (and don’t forget to buy a house there while you’re at it…).
Driving to work this morning (a mere 3km with no traffic – bliss apart from the pot holes), I counted five new rebuilds at a quick count. The extent of this rebuild locally is really beginning to gain momentum. The sense of community “in the fix” and being rejuvenated is both exciting and confidence-building. Three years on, the fact that there is life after such a massive event – and what’s more, a life after for Parklands – is such a positive message in itself. To actually witness the reality of it happening is a huge morale booster for us all.
After all, we live here because of the lifestyle it provides – there’s not too many places in town where you have the beach, a forest and multiple golf courses virtually on your back doorstep!
Witnessing the transition from the demolition and investigative phases into the repair/rebuilding phase is great in itself and personally I’d rather see concrete mixers and Place Makers trucks in the neighbourhood rather than excavators and geotechnical drilling rigs – new plus growth is good!
On a real estate note, the market has also moved to the next gear with the New Year market tracking positively, open homes well attended and local sale prices on the rise. With the city spring-boarding forward following a strong 2013 after the best part of 13 per cent capital growth. The list to sell period remains relatively short at 35 days.
Clearly life is going on in our buzzy community and I don’t know about you but I’m loving the can-do and “we can fix it” attitude that is reverberating throughout our streets and neighbourhoods. Bring it on!