About 6,000 people currently live in Christchurch’s inner city; a third less than pre-quake. We have been warned we must speed up central city growth if new enterprises are to survive. The CBD has seen a lot of retail, office and civic developments, but the missing ingredient is people.
I believe it’s critically important for the future of the city to have a strong residential component. You need a night-time economy to add to the daytime economy. So I totally endorse the Christchurch City Council’s recently announced three-year plan aimed at accelerating the inner city population, named Project 8011 after the central city postcode and the estimated number of homes needed for 20,000 people.
Incentives in the plan range from working with developers to provide subsidies around the consenting and building fees charged by the council, to low equity loans, rebates on development contributions and investment from the NZ Super Fund, as well as introducing rating and other financial incentives to encourage people to buy. Its geographical focus is the central city as defined in the Christchurch District Plan – known as the ‘Four Avenues’.
I am already seeing keen interest from buyers in apartments, town houses and homes in the specified area; the SOHO Apartments at 118 Salisbury St where pre-paid rates and pre-paid body corp fees for up to three years are part of the incentive to purchase, are 60 percent pre-sold. So the new plan is being talked about and is working.
To find out more about these incentives and other inner city properties, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.