Te Kaha (Canterbury Multi-Use Arena)

Updated: 13.01.2023

Target capacity30 000
Country New Zealand
CityChristchurch
ClubsCruzaders
CategoryConstruction in progress
Construction 2022–2026
Cost NZ$ 683 M (US$ 474.4 M)
Design Kōtui
Contractor Kōtui

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Te Kaha – construction description

Why is a major new stadium being built in Christchurch?

The construction of a new stadium in Christchurch follows two catastrophic earthquakes that hit the city in September 2010 and February 2011. Among other things, the tremors damaged the city's main stadium, Lancaster Park, which was decommissioned (it was demolished in 2019). The facility was replaced by a temporary stadium that was built in the Addington district.

A Christchurch redevelopment plan was published in July 2012, which included a new stadium to replace Lancaster Park. The construction of the venue was to be co-financed by government funding and the city budget. The municipality proceeded to gradually buy up land and demolish buildings on the parcel of land intended for the new arena.

How did the project for a new stadium in Christchurch progress?

In 2018, geotechnical investigations of the ground began. In March 2021, a main contractor was selected who was also tasked with designing the stadium. A design and cost estimate was to be prepared before a final contract was concluded.

The contractor was a Kōtui consortium led by BESIX Watpac, with input from local construction firms Southbase Construction and Fulton Hogan, seismologist Lewis Bradford, architectural studios Warren and Mahoney and Populous, and consulting firm Mott MacDonald.

In January 2022, city councillors approved a new name for the planned stadium - 'Te Kaha' (Maori for 'strength'). This is a shortened version from 'Te Kaharoa' ('enduring strength'), which was previously given to the piece of land on which the stadium is to stand.

How is the construction of Te Kaha stadium in Christchurch progressing?

On April 8, 2022, the groundbreaking ceremony was held and work began to prepare the site for construction. The start of the actual construction work still had to be delayed until the final approval of the design by the city. Rising inflation and an increase in the price of construction materials and services caused the estimated cost of development to rise to a not inconsiderable $683 million (the original plan was to spend $473 million).

In July 2022, the city council voted to increase the investment budget so that work could continue. It was also agreed to postpone the stadium's delivery date to April 2026 (the facility was originally scheduled to be ready by the end of 2024, but the date was later set for the end of June 2025).

What will Te Kaha Stadium in Christchurch be like?

The stadium will have stands for 30,000 spectators (including 25,000 fixed seats and 5,000 in a folding stand behind one end of the pitch) and will be equipped with a full canopy covering both the stands and the pitch. The facility will be built in the heart of Christchurch city centre.

The arena will be used for rugby union, rugby league or football, with the Crusaders rugby team expected to be the main user. The stadium will also host concerts and other events.

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