Christchurch City Council are purchasing the site at 44 London Street, Lyttelton, for the development of a new civic square, identified as a priority by the local community in the recently adopted Lyttelton Master Plan.
The local community has, with the help of Gap Filler, already adopted this site and has been using it as a makeshift space to meet and socialise. Children's birthday parties are held there, as well as music events and civic ceremonies. The informal use of the site by the community will carry on, at no cost, until the development of the site as a civic square gets underway.
Councillor Claudia Reid says this land purchase will be a catalyst for the recovery and rebuild of Lyttelton.
"Lyttelton does not have a public gathering place for community activities. It is wonderful that we have seized this opportunity so quickly after the adoption of the Lyttelton Master Plan. We now have a plan and the funding for this key site for the people of Lyttelton. I have no doubt that Lyttelton's new civic square will become the town's pulsating heart."
The Master Plan's vision for the site includes the relocation of the Lyttelton War Memorial Cenotaph and the creation of space for recreation and socialisation. There will be a children's play area, landscaping and an improved connection with Council-owned land adjoining the site.
The Council approved $2 million through the Annual Plan process this year for strategic land purchases arising from Suburban Centres Programme-related master plans. The purchase of 44 London Street is the first to be funded from this money.
The master plan as presented to the Council on 21 June 2012 is available
Printed copies of the final master plan are expected to be available late July.