Christchurch International Airport Limited (CIAL) has welcomed the just-released Christchurch Central Recovery Plan.
Chief Executive Jim Boult says the team at Christchurch Airport looks forward to a new central city which he believes will be the envy of similar sized cities throughout the world.
“We applaud this eagerly awaited plan for the recovery of central Christchurch,” says Mr Boult. “The process behind the plan has been robust and the people working on it have clearly grasped the opportunity to create a new and exciting central city.”
Mr Boult says he is pleased to see government commitment to both a convention centre and significant sports stadium in a central city location.
“The loss of a significant portion of Christchurch’s hotel accommodation, its convention centre and much of its sporting infrastructure has reduced the numbers of people visiting here, so we anticipate people returning when the facilities do.
“We believe the very best thing CIAL can do is continue to grow aeronautical routes into the South Island. When the city gets hotels and attractions back, it won’t be a difficult job to migrate those visitors back in to spend a night or two in the city. “
Mr Boult says the airport company looks forward to Christchurch having a more sustainable and well-sized CBD.
“The combination of convention centre and hotels, shopping and entertainment precincts, a sports stadium and apartments will invigorate the central city and be enhanced by the beautiful areas created alongside the Avon River. I am sure the combination will make Christchurch the envy of similar sized cities throughout the world.”
Mr Boult says CIAL is proud to be a backbone of the local economy.
“Christchurch Airport is the largest single centre of employment in the South Island,” he says. “In 2011, almost 6000 people were employed on the airport campus in full time, part time or casual roles. The airport also created employment for 20,300 full time equivalents on and off campus. That means Christchurch Airport generated $1.7 billion in regional GDP.”
Mr Boult says his team is very motivated and actively working towards welcoming more visitors through Christchurch Airport – the entry point to the best New Zealand has to offer.