"I think Christchurch has turned a corner," Lianne Dalziel says.
The mayor of Christchurch, who is stepping down at the next election, says those who have visited the city recently have seen how much progress has been made since the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011.
Dalziel this morning told Q+A that “a lot of people who come here from out of town, who haven’t been here for a while are very impressed with the direction that we’re heading in".
"They can see the change. A lot of people have said to me ‘this is the place of the future, this is the place where I can see myself moving and establishing myself here’."
But she also told Jack Tame there are challenges ahead, especially handling the growth in the outer regions of the city, and the region.
"After the earthquakes a number of the planning changes that were expected or anticipated over time were fast-tracked and people essentially moved from the weaker soils to the strong soils and the gravels that sit on the outer reaches to our north west and to our south.
"So as they moved away from the coast and the softer soils we’ve ended up with what looks like urban sprawl."
Dalziel, who is stepping aside after nine years leading New Zealand’s second biggest city, says she’s "still got a few things to do".
"I’m not retiring at the end of this term, but I am going to take a new direction in life."