Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre opened in the Garden City today.
After four years of construction, three million hours of labour and at a cost of $450 million - it’s finally open for business.
Ōtākaro’s Chief executive John Bridgman says it’s an exciting day.
“It's going to be such an icon for Christchurch.”
The old convention centre was destroyed in the 2011 earthquake.
The pandemic pushing out last years planned opening of the new build.
“Covid has been a challenge for construction all over the world both form a resource perspective on site but also the supply chain getting the materials from around the world,” says Bridgman.
A lot of thought has gone into the smaller details of Te Pae - the architect was inspired after flying over Christchurch.
Te Pae general manager Ross Steele said the architect took a photo of one of the braided rivers and that formed the inspiration of the building today.
“All the rooms are named after braided rivers in our region,” he said.
With the capacity to host 2000 people the centre’s already attracting domestic and international interest. Around 100 events are confirmed for next year, 12 of them from overseas.
It’s also expected to inject about $60 million into the local economy.
Bridgman says that brings with it lots of benefits.
“So that translates into a lot of accommodation, a lot of hospitality, a lot of people spending in Christchurch as they come to visit.”
The public will soon get their chance to have a look around with an open day planned for early next year.