WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) -- A convention center, sports stadium and performing arts center are among the big projects planned for a new-look downtown Christchurch after the New Zealand city was reduced to rubble by an earthquake last year.
Essentially given a blank slate, government planners on Monday unveiled a blueprint for the city that replaces office towers with green spaces, urban apartments and innovation "hubs" they say will give the city the feel of a college campus. Under the plan, the city will be smaller, the buildings lower in height and constructed to higher earthquake standards.
The plan has been eagerly awaited. It has been nearly 18 months since the magnitude-6.1 quake struck, killing 185 people and irreparably damaging 1,400 downtown buildings including the Anglican cathedral in the city center.