Select Evolution, a Canada based international leisure and entertainment developer, plans to build the largest mountain bike park in the Southern Hemisphere, located on the Port Hills, just 5km from the centre of Christchurch. The Park will occupy 780 acres of working forest, providing excellent terrain for mountain biking and will incorporate numerous additional attractions including specialised learning areas, zip lines, mountain coaster, sightseeing and rock climbing.
“We are very excited about this project and want it to be a significant contribution to the rebuild of Christchurch. We chose Christchurch because of the population base, the proximity to an international airport, the variety of terrain, the enthusiasm from the local mountain bike community and the support from local and central government. The Park will attract mountain bikers from around the globe and establish New Zealand as a centre of excellence for the sport,” says Fiona Sutton, Chairman of Select Evolution.
The Park will include the world’s first purpose built chairlift to ascend over 435 vertical metres with a distance of 1.8km carrying up to 1200 riders with their bikes per hour, giving access to over 120km of trails of varying difficulty designed for beginners to world champions. This will be the world’s first lift accessed downhill bike park to operate year round. Furthermore, the Park will offer on site accommodation for out of town guests, food and beverage, mountain bike school and rental shop. For Christchurch, the “City Of Cycles”, this project is consistent with the local community outlook on outdoor adventure, and will provide a world-class facility for all ages.
The project, scheduled to open in late 2015, will cost NZ$22.5m and has been awarded a funding grant from the Tourism Growth Partnership.