On its Share an Idea website the council explains the Plan like this:
The Central City Plan is a vision which will outline how people, business and retail can use this area of Christchurch; how we will develop the public spaces; how we might move about the Central City; what activities we will promote in this area; what public facilities will be found in the Central City; how we support businesses to return to the Central City and what types of buildings are rebuilt.Some work has been done, and decisions made, by the council prior to consultation:
We are not beginning with a blank canvas as considerable work has already been done on how to revitalise the Central City. The Central City Plan will build on this work. Some decisions may also be made about the Building Code and future use of land in the Central City by the Earthquake Commission and Government which will need to be reflected in the Central City Plan.The council has established an outline and constraints for the planning process, and all discussion and contributions will need to comply with this to be considered relevant. Even if you don't want to be involved in the planning process, you can see already how the plan will take shape, and how the basic physical layout of the city is going to look.
The areas for which the council will be planning are:There is no indication if these four categories are in order of descending priority.
- Move – how people get to and around the central city
- Market – how to encourage economic activity in the city centre
- Space – what our city looks like and how space is used
- Life – how to create a vibrant centre that’s a great place to live, work and play
In describing the process the council also mention that some physical constraints have been placed on what can happen:
What are we working with?
There are a number of aspects to the Central City which will not be changed and will shape the Central City Plan. These non-negotiables are:
- The Central City will not be relocated.
- More than 50% of buildings within the red zone are likely to have survived the earthquake and will remain in their current form.
- The form and function of Hagley Park will remain the same.
- The meandering Avon River’s course will not be changed.
- The grid pattern of the Central City streets will remain; however, there may be changes to traffic flows and use of streets.