Council to contribute $40.5m to City Block

The Invercargill City Council will contribute a total of $40.5 million in the city block development, in recognition of the community wellbeing outcomes the project offers.

Councillors approved its funding contribution at an extraordinary meeting on Wednesday, 8 June, after a series of funding announcements and changes.

In May 2020, Council had consulted with the community on whether to invest extra funding in the development, which would result in a $46m total investment.

Council had also applied to Central Government’s Shovel Ready initiative for funding towards the development.

On 29 June, Council resolved to approve the $46m investment, and noted the amount would be lower if funds were received from shovel ready.

On 1 July, it was announced that Central Government would contribute an additional $10m towards the project.

Chief Executive Clare Hadley said Invercargill Central Limited had since become aware that there had been changes to bank funding availability, due to changes in lending rules as a result of COVID-19.

“Council agreed to cover that shortfall in bank funding. This means that its total contribution to the project is $40.5m – based on the additional $10m from central government coming off the approved $46m investment,” Mrs Hadley said.

Council’s shareholding in the development project will be approximately 45 per cent as a result of its investment.

“Council considered the increased risks to the development that COVID-19 has created, and has been clear about its desire to support its community, and the local economy.

“Knowing this project offers employment opportunities during both construction and operations, is part of that,” Mrs Hadley said.