Inner city Christchurch is buzzing with the opening of the Riverside Market, on the corner of Cashel Street and Oxford Terrace, near the Bridge of Remembrance and, of course, close to the Avon River. The $80 million investment is the brainchild of developers Richard Peebles, Kris Inglis and Mike Percasky, who started working on the concept four years ago. It is an attempt to continue the rejuvenation of the central city after the devastation of the February 2011 earthquake. It is a seven day operation, opening Monday to Saturday 9am to 6pm, and Sunday 9am to 4pm.
Covering 3500 square metres, under one roof, there are food outlets, stalls and a food collective, with rooftop bars and restaurants to open soon. The Market is linked to laneways containing boutique shops, restaurants, cafes and bars.
25,000 people visited on the first Saturday. The aim is to attract 10,000 customers on week days, and up to 15,000 in the weekend. When I visited there was plenty of settling in activity, with workmen installing items and some stalls still to be fully operational.