Improvements are being made to the Te Nukutai o Tapoa-Naval Point area to prepare for the SailGP racing series being held at Whakaraupō-Lyttelton Harbour in January 2022.
Christchurch City Council says it is assessing what work can be carried out to roads and pedestrian access ways it owns and manages to and from the site, as well as parking areas near the boat ramp.
This is likely to include a general tidy up to the road surface and shoulders on Godley Quay, with the aim of improving vehicle and pedestrian access from Te Ana Marina down to Naval Point.
The toilets next to the Lyttelton Information Centre, on Oxford Street, are also being upgraded. Design work is under way to reconfigure the inside of the toilet facilities, with work planned to start in October. The project will see the toilets become unisex and baby changing facilities included.
These projects are in addition to the almost $4 million the Council is spending on fast-tracking part of the parking area phase of the Naval Point Development Plan, adopted in November 2020, to make sure the site is ready for racing. An ageing water main has already been replaced, while utilities are being upgraded and foreshore improvements made. All work is being funded through existing budgets.
Temporary infrastructure – such as toilets, grandstands, staging and marquees – required to host the event are being provided by SailGP, as the event organiser.
Some residents have raised concerns in the past about cars being driven unsafely at Naval Point.
Christchurch City Council Head of Parks, Andrew Rutledge says a number of cameras have been installed onsite at Naval Point to help minimise vandalism and unsafe vehicle use.
“Signage has gone up to let people know there are cameras monitoring activity. We also encourage residents to contact the police if they see unsafe behaviour,” he said.
SailGP will be a ticketed event, with a comprehensive traffic management plan (TMP) currently being worked on detailing how residents, workers and spectators will be able to access Lyttelton, Naval Point and the wider harbour communities.
Council will review the plan once submitted and says it is working closely with partner agencies to make sure lessons learnt from previous events in Lyttelton are incorporated and there will be a functioning transport network during SailGP.