Canterbury Regional Economic Development Strategy News

This page provides news and updates on the Canterbury Regional Economic Development Strategy (CREDS).

Progress reports are presented to the Mayoral Forum’s reference group for the CREDS, which meets approximately six monthly.

23 June 2017: Launch of CREDS 2017–19

The Mayoral Forum launched the CREDS for 2017–19 in Christchurch on Friday 23 June 2017, with Hons Simon Bridges and Nathan Guy, who lead central government’s Regional Growth Programme. Ministers announced funding of $2.185m  for 11 ‘accelerator projects’ to support CREDS implementation (see link at right).
This funding is additional to the $1.19m allocated to Canterbury in 2017 from the Regional Mid-sized Tourism Facilities Grant Fund.

27 January 2017: More UFB in Canterbury

Canterbury Mayors welcome the Government’s announcement of expanded Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) to more than 151 additional towns by the end of 2024, on top of the 33 cities that already have UFB.

Prime Minister Bill English and Communications Minister Simon Bridges made the announcement on 26 January 2017, at an event hosted by Mayor Winton Dalley in Amberley (Hurunui District).

Click here for a map of current and planned communities with UFB in the South Island.

25 additional areas in Canterbury will receive UFB: Kaikōura, Cheviot, Culverden, Amberley, Waikuku Beach, Woodend fringe, Rangiora fringe, Oxford, Christchurch fringe, Diamond Harbour, Akaroa, West Melton, Lincoln fringe, Darfield, Leeston, Southbridge, Rakaia, Methven, Lake Hood, Geraldine, Lake Tekapo, Twizel, Temuka, Pleasant Point and Waimate.

For Canterbury’s Mayors, achieving ‘a fully connected Canterbury’ can’t come fast enough!

17 January 2017: 4G mobile roll out in Canterbury

Spark New Zealand partnered with the Mayoral Forum and announced in December 2015 that it would bring forward its roll out of 4G fast mobile broadband and complete this across the Canterbury region by December 2016. Spark prioritised approximately $14m of investment into Canterbury to ensure existing mobile sites in rural Canterbury have 4G coverage.

Spark met its target, with the exception of the Hundalee site. The earthquake on 14 November 2016 broke a guy wire on the mast and cannot be repaired until road access is secured and a crane can be taken up to the mast.

Over and above the upgrade, a new 4G mobile site has been completed at Glenavy, and an additional antenna added to the site at Aylesbury to provide some more specific coverage to Kirwee. While most of Christchurch City had 4G deployed in 1800MHz, Spark completed an overlay across the city of 4G in 700MHz, adding significant additional capacity to these sites.

During 2016, Spark NZ launched a Wireless Broadband Service using 4G, providing an effective option for many people in rural Canterbury with poor-performing fixed-line broadband. 4G delivers download speeds of well above 20 and up to 135 megabits per second. Moving to Wireless Broadband has increased speeds 30x and up to 50x for people in rural Canterbury.

To find out more, check whether 4G is available at your address, or register interest in getting Rural Wireless Broadband, click here.

28 October 2016: Regional growth isn’t only about the big cities

Infometrics notes (25 October 2016) that provisional GDP estimates for the year to June 2016 showed that Napier, Nelson, Tauranga and Hamilton all grew at a faster rate than Auckland, Wellington or Christchurch. This is partly due to ‘halos’ of activity around the big cities and people (particularly in Auckland) looking for more affordable housing. Another key factor for some regions over the past year has been continued growth of tourism. Mackenzie District, for example, experienced a 17% growth in traffic flows, a 20% growth in guest nights and headline GDP climbed 5.1%.