Enjoying Post Earthquake Christchurch
4 years after the series of quakes started, Central Christchurch is easily accessible to leisure, business and corporate visitors.
CentrePoint on Colombo Motel is both fully operational and accessible.
Christchurch city centre is now more open than ever and driving through the city centre on Colombo Street is once again possible. The 9.9km drive from Christchurch airport is also free of road works. There are still some central city roads closed for quake related repairs but detour signage will help you around the affected areas. Once 2 bridges are repaired the inner city Tram will resume its full route and the Victoria Street Precinct, only a 5 minute walk away now has some of the best dining options in Christchurch as well as bar and nightclub options.
From our central location all areas of Christchurch are easily accessible. While not essential, a car would make your stay with us more satisfying – we are a motel after all! Outside of the central city area, attractions, tours, restaurants etc. are operating normally. As the Garden City moves forward, options will continue to expand and you will once again be able to fully enjoy the most beautiful city in New Zealand.
See Lonely Planet's What to do in Christchurch: your post-quake guide for an independent view of what's good in Christchurch.
So What is Happening in Christchurch?
As of the end of June 2013 the CERA controlled Red Zone fences were removed, the NZ Army went home and we got our city centre back! For the first time in 2 years and 4 months we could walk from the motel entrance, straight down Colombo St. to Cathedral Square. Getting something back, after having it stolen from you in such a way, after such a long time, is an amazing feeling!.. Cont'd....
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3 Wonderful Ways to Visit Christchurch
Christchurch Stopover - 1 night visit
Passing through Christchurch by plane, train or automobile? We offer comfortable motel accommodation where you can refresh for the next stage of your journey. Shuttles and taxis service the airport and train station frequently and we are only a short walk from the Intercity bus stop on on Armagh Street. A selection of the best restaurants in Christchurch can be walked to both close to the Motel and on Victoria Street.
Christchurch Experience - 2 night visit
Stay and enjoy the beauty of Christchurch. From CentrePoint on Colombo Motel, walk to the splendid Botanic Gardens – beautiful year round and then take a Punt on the River Avon from the historic Antigua Boatsheds. Also don't forget to select a sampling of cheeses - by the gram! - at Canterbury Cheesemongers in the Arts Centre for an afternoon or evening snack. Several cafes in this area will allow you to relax and watch time go by. On Fridays and Saturdays there are stalls selling local wares and produce. Nearby Mona Vale and Riccarton Bush, 2 historic Christchurch landmarks are also full of natural beauty, or drive a short distant to the International Antarctic Centre, Airforce Museum, Orana or Willowbank wildlife parks. Time your visit for the weekend - the Riccarton Farmers market, Riccarton Rotary Sunday Market and the Ferrymead Heritage Park are all special parts of Christchurch.
Christchurch and Canterbury Experience - 3 night plus visit
Even pre-quake, many of our guests visited us this way to get the most out of Christchurch and the surrounding Canterbury region. In addition to the Christchurch Experience 2 night visit itinerary, add an unforgettable day trip on the TranzAlpine Train, visit Hanmer (90mins drive) and soak in the hotpools after walking up Conical Hill or take a day trip to Akaroa (70 mins drive) and enjoy walking around the village or taking a Habour Cruise with Black cat Cruises.
Jeff and Naomi look forward to welcoming you to Christchurch
As of the end of June 2013 the CERA controlled Red Zone fences were removed, the NZ Army went home and we got our city centre back! For the first time in 2 years and 4 months we could walk from the motel entrance, straight down Colombo St. to Cathedral Square. Getting something back, after having it stolen from you in such a way, after such a long time, is an amazing feeling!
We celebrated and then got a quick reality check with the Colombo st. Bridge closed for repairs. So much for walking straight down to The Square - we now have to walk around the block till the bridge is repaired. There are also fences closing off some streets in other parts of the central city or surrounding dangerous buildings but generally speaking it is now possible to walk thru the city centre instead of around it.
But, this is present day Christchurch where, as a result of the quakes, 1/2 of the underground infrastructure has to be replaced, meaning roadworks for the next 5 years. There are also still at least a few dozen buildings yet to come down, some of which may take up to a year to demolish. In total, it could be that somewhere between 70% to 90% of the buildings in the central city are demolished. Structurally sound buildings are among them because it's going to be cheaper to rebuild than repair them.
On the other hand, the pace of reconstruction is ramping up in some parts of the city. Closest to us is Victoria St. where the street is lined with new building sites bulging with promise.
Around the central city there is enough to keep visitors busy aplenty and with more restaurants opening all the time things are looking up! The Re:START container mall, Cathedral Square, New Regent St. the Transitional Cathedral, the Pallet Pavilion, are all deserved of a visit in the city centre and further afield the gondola is open and Sumner and Lyttelton are places to visit.
Come visit Christchurch but be patient, the city is definitely still in recovery and the amount of road cones is testament to this. But as long as you visit with the right background information you will be able to enjoy your visit to the Garden City.
A comparison of damaged property & insurance with Japan & Chile;
Some $20b of damaged property - about 10% of NZ's GDP – will be rebuilt. The Japan quake was about 3-4% of Japan's GDP. Insurers will meet 80% of Christchurch losses to date whereas they will meet only 17% of Japan's and 27% of Chile's earthquake losses last year.
Local businesses have done well compared with those in other earthquake-devastated economies. The Canterbury Employers' Chamber of Commerce says 90% of 350 members within the 4 aves are still operating in the city.
These statistics may go some way to explain how “it was a very big earthquake” and why its taking a long time.
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