Support for petition to block cricket proposal

CHARLEY MANN
Last updated 05:00 11/03/2013
Hagley Oval petition
DON SCOTT/Fairfax NZ

ANTI-DEVELOPMENT: More than 3000 people have signed a petition protesting Canterbury Cricket's plan to develop Hagley Oval into an international cricket ground.

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Members of the Save Hagley Park group gathered signatures outside the Ellerslie Flower Show, held in Hagley Park until yesterday.

Group spokesman Martin Meehan said about 80 per cent of people the group had approached had been positive about the campaign and had signed the petition.

The rest were split between supporting the development and not knowing enough to sign the petition, he said.

Canterbury Cricket is seeking planning permission to:

Construct an embankment with an average height of 2.2 metres around Hagley Oval to accommodate 12,000 spectators.

Construct a two-storey pavilion and grandstand within the embankment beneath a tent-like canopy.

Install four lighting towers 30.9m high when retracted and 48.9m when in operation.

Install temporary stands and scaffolding for televised events, a picket fence along the inside of the oval during matches, and sightscreens.

Save Hagley Park had been accused of being "provocative" and "held up as a little group of negative fanatics", Meehan said, but only wanted to preserve the free and open space of the city's park.

It will present the petition to the Environment Court around June, when it considers Canterbury Cricket's application.

The Christchurch City Council has decided to bypass the normal decision-making process because of the controversy over the proposed development and the likelihood that any decision it made would be appealed to the court.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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