At the LGNZ EXCELLENCE Awards.
EQC EXCELLENCE Award for Infrastructure Project of the Year
Finalist: Christchurch City Council, in association with Canterbury Cricket – Hagley Oval
Cricket World Cup players have departed but the Hagley Oval, developed by Christchurch City Council, in association with Canterbury Cricket, is still proving a big hitter.
Awards judges praised the scheme as an “amazing infrastructure project”, which was delivered on time and pulled the community together behind the initiative.
The city’s two first-class cricket grounds were destroyed in the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 and the challenge was to create a new home for cricket in time for Christchurch to host the opening of the Cricket World Cup.
The Oval includes a contemporary pavilion, which complements the historic surroundings, and a 20,000-capacity international ground.
Challenges included raising $9 million of funding, a lengthy resource consent process and extensive community engagement to gain public confidence for development on historic Hagley Park.
The project delivered on its goals through strong partnerships with key stakeholders, consistent engagement with the local community, good planning and stringent management.
The partnership also ensured targeted and professional fundraising, technical support to meet consenting requirements and a broad community engagement plan.
A communications plan was developed to gain the support of people concerned about the change of use within the park. The public was invited to watch progress through open days and project ambassadors were employed to answer queries.
Ultimately, it proved a star of the World Cup with 97 percent of participants stating that events at the Oval had exceeded expectations and the ICC calling it a “stunning stage”.
LGNZ president Lawrence Yule said, “Hagley Oval is an important and symbolic project to Christchurch and Canterbury, and also had national impact through its successful hosting for the World Cup. Hagley Oval will be an ongoing asset to the city and the process was an excellent example of community engagement.”
This article was first published in the September 2015 issue of NZ Local Government Magazine.