Tram loop needs cash

22:39, Feb 25 2014

The operators of Christchurch's heritage tramway want the city council to commit $1.2 million towards completing the figure-eight loop through the central city.

The council has already committed to completing the loop of track from New Regent St through to Cashel Mall, but Welcome Aboard, the company which operates the tram, wants it to also commit to completing the second loop, from High St to Cathedral Square.

Addressing the council's environment committee yesterday, Welcome Aboard managing director Michael Esposito said 98 per cent of the loop was in place but there was a section of track missing behind the Cathedral.

It was likely to cost about $1.2 million to complete the loop.

The company wanted the council to commit those funds in its 2011/15 Annual Plan so that the loop could be completed by early next year, in time for the influx of visitors expected for the Cricket World Cup, the FIFA Under-20 World Cup, and the national kapa haka championships.

Environment committee chairman Cr Phil Clearwater said the committee could not give an immediate commitment to completing the loop but the council could consider the company's request during its Annual Plan deliberations.

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