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Second Turners and Growers agreement signed

8 November 2006

The green light has been given for the revitalisation of the old Turners and Growers site bounded by Madras, Lichfield, Barbadoes and Tuam Streets.

The second agreement in a two stage process has been signed between the site’s current owner, the Christchurch City Council, and Urban Winery Christchurch Ltd (UWC), enabling UWC to revitalise 13,000m­­­2 of the site with a central city urban winery and village.

“Council’s plans for the site have always been for it to be used as a catalyst for residential redevelopment on the eastern side of the central city, and an example of intensive mixed use activity,” says Council General Manager Strategy and Planning  Michael Theelen.

“Council is delighted with UWC plans and believe they will be a great addition to Council and private development work in the Central City’s east area and to the Central City Revitalisation as a whole.”

UWC Directors Rasbeer Gill and Ian Cassels have extensive experience in urban revitalisation projects in Wellington and see this development as one way to support and maintain the drive to intensify Christchurch’s inner city.

“Urban Winery Christchurch Limited is excited by the opportunity to undertake the  revitalisation of the  former Turners and Growers block. The development is designed to establish and build momentum through a careful choice of mixed use activities that will contribute towards central city rejuvenation,” says Mr Gill.

“The emphasis will be high quality residential with sufficient additional activity to ensure that the neighbourhood offers a long-term sustainable option for living within the city.”

The key, says Mr Cassels, “is that we create an environment capable of attracting our sons and daughters back from overseas. We want to encourage Christchurch people back into their central city to enjoy it and be proud of it.

“Christchurch is capable of footing it with the best boutique cities in the world if it can combine its abundant natural assets with a regained vibrant inner city.”

The proposal provides for residential accommodation, a hotel with winery, a retail market area, car parking and a central public space connecting to Lichfield, Tuam and Madras Streets.

Ian McKenzie, Council City Solutions Project Manager, says the milestone means  the Council is another step closer to achieving its vision for Central City Revitalisation. 

“The Council originally acquired the site in 2002 for the purpose of revitalising and enhancing the eastern side of the central city.  Subsequent rezoning has enabled residential development on the site. Development as a quality residential area with attractive and accessible public open spaces where people will want to live and contribute to the vitality of the area is key to the Council’s Revitalisation Strategy,” he says.

“Ultimately, we anticipate development of this site will lead to further residential development and investment in the central city, complementing recent inner-city projects undertaken by other developers.”

UWC expect the development to take between five and seven years depending on the actual rate of demand for residential accommodation.


The original Turners and Growers site (17,546m­­­2) was acquired by the Christchurch City Council in July 2002 for $3.68 million for the purpose of revitalising and enhancing the eastern side of the central city. In the last year under a “deconstruction” contract,  buildings, steel, timber and other reusable materials were removed from the site and most of the concrete crushed and retained for use as fill by the developer.   

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