I have brought Julie Villard with me to introduce her to you all. She is the welcoming face of the Council's recently-launched Eco Design Advisor service, which offers a free two-hour session where advisors can consult on a range of projects from new builds to home renovations and retrofits. I couldn’t think of a better opportunity to let such an influential gathering know about what we can offer. Please feel free to have a chat to Julie this evening.
It is a significant occasion that has brought us all together. Home Ideas is celebrating its 30th Anniversary here in Christchurch. Formerly located in the city centre, it has been here for a number of years.
I haven’t asked about post-earthquake numbers, but I can say that my husband and I spent a lot of time in Mandeville St when we had to move into a home that required renovating alongside EQC repairs.
We loved the opportunity to look at different options in one place. Home Ideas is filled with good ideas, with its permanent exhibition of products and services relating to the home renovation and building sector.
I’m told that visitors often arrive at the Home Ideas Centre at their wits’ end. Building or renovating is extremely stressful under normal circumstances, let alone after you add an earthquake or two to the mix.
How many of us have had to deal with large insurance corporations, building companies or government departments before? A lot of us didn’t really know where to start or from whom to ask for advice.
At the Home Ideas Centre the exhibitors are the experts and they work really hard to alleviate this stress, so that home owners, buyers or renovators can get advice, compare products and services, all under one roof.
And now we have a new offering, which is what tonight’s all about. Eight well known builders in Canterbury have created a mini street of houses right here at the Centre to help those who are planning a new home.
Created in-situ, visitors can walk into a room and experience each builder’s unique style, craftsmanship and design.
Each one has crafted a segment of a house that they feel best represents their company’s position in the market.
In that respect, the Street of Houses seamlessly connects home builders and home buyers, which should be particularly helpful for those who are building for the first time.
This is a fantastic concept for considering a range of Building Solutions and Home Matters!
But most importantly, and why I’m here as Mayor, it’s the first of its kind in New Zealand.
The new Christchurch is a city of opportunity. We are open to new ideas and we love to be the first to give things a go.
We are New Zealand’s first city – established by Royal Charter in 1856. So New Zealand’s oldest city is becoming its newest city and this is one more example of what that means.