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It comes as the Canterbury Cricket Trust finalises its application to secure permanent lighting through earthquake recovery laws in a bid to secure high profile matches at the 2021 Women’s Cricket World Cup.
Said Ms Dalziel: “The international games will attract visitors to Christchurch. There is significant economic benefit to the city through visitor nights and the flow-on effect that has to everyone working in the service sectors that support our visitor economy.”
The cricket trust wants to install six 48.9m permanent lights around the oval and increase the number of days the oval can be used for cricket from 13 to 25 a year.
It is seeking to fast track the changes under section 71 of the Greater Christchurch Regeneration Act. It is working on the application alongside Crown agency Regenerate Christchurch.
The Act gives Greater Christchurch Regeneration Associate Minister Poto Williams the power to approve changes without the same level of public input and scrutiny needed to amend the District Plan.
Ms Williams will have 30 days to decide whether she will proceed with it after receiving the proposal. If she does, she must invite written comments from the public before making a decision on the proposal within 30 working days.
Ms Dalziel’s main mayoral rivals are either not in support or would not comment.
John Minto thought there was a “poor business case” for permanent lighting.
He labelled using the Regeneration act to secure the lights as “bypassing the democratic process.”
Darryll Park said it would be “inappropriate” for him to comment on a matter which is subject to ministerial decision.
Cricket trust chairman Lee Robinson said it has received a “very favourable indication” from the International Cricket Council that Hagley Oval would receive at least one semi-final and possibly a final if it secures new lights.
He said it would be highly unlikely the oval would host any high ranking teams such as India and England without the lights due to broadcasting agreements.
Women’s Cricket World Cup 2021 chief executive Andrea Nelson said the oval had every chance to secure a final or semi-final, but would need lights to do so.
Current consent conditions allow four lights to be installed if the supports can be retracted and the light heads removed during the off-season. These were priced at $9 million to install in 2015. Mr Robinson said the permanent lights were likely to cost between $6 million and $9 million.