Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Lyttelton SailGP works stay afloat

Work at Naval Point-Te Nukutai o Tapoa is continuing despite the news that the New Zealand Sail Grand Prix will not go ahead in January next year.

The event was scheduled to take place at Whakaraupō Lyttelton Harbour on 29 and 30 January 2022, but SailGP athletes and support crew were unable to secure spaces in managed isolation (MIQ).

Christchurch City Council has been undertaking planned works at Naval Point to prepare the site for the sailing event.

SailGP is still in discussions with the Government about whether a Christchurch leg of the international racing series can go ahead as part of a future racing season.

“ChristchurchNZ and SailGP worked hard to bring SailGP racing to Whakaraupō, Lyttelton Harbour. The event is world-class and would have delivered significant benefits to Christchurch and New Zealand and we are naturally disappointed that the January 2022 fixture has had to be cancelled due to issues beyond either of our control,” ChristchurchNZ Chief Executive, Joanna Norris says.

“We are now working hard to negotiate a future partnership so the benefits to Ōtautahi Christchurch of hosting SailGP are delayed rather than lost. We are confident that SailGP is supportive of bringing the event to Christchurch in future seasons.”

Christchurch City Council Head of Parks, Andrew Rutledge says contractor Fulton Hogan is back working at Naval Point, following a short halt due to COVID-19 restrictions.

“Phase one of the Naval Point-Te Nukutai o Tapoa Development Plan is still on track to be completed by the end of November this year,” he said.

“While we are very pleased to hear SailGP racing may come to Whakaraupō at a later date, we know the many groups that regularly use the area will be happy to have these first stage improvements finished in time for this summer.”

The harbour is a popular public boat launching facility and the surrounding area is well-used by recreational water sports enthusiasts, while the nearby Lyttelton recreation grounds are also important to the community, Mr Rutledge said.

Work being undertaken at the site includes completing the storm water drainage works and the installation of kerbs/concrete beam followed by pavement works. Utilities are being upgraded, foreshore improvements have been made and some minor landscaping works are also planned.

The upgrade of the public toilets on Oxford Street, next to the Lyttelton Information Centre, is also continuing. 

The plan to redevelop Naval Point-Te Nukutai o Tapoa, which was approved by the Te Pātaka o Rākaihautū/Banks Peninsula Community Board in November 2020, is estimated at $27 million to implement.

This first phase – part of the car park upgrade – is being funded through the existing project budget in the Long Term Plan.


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