Timaru District Council is aiming to put the district back firmly on the tourism map with the launch of Aoraki Tourism, the tourism development body for the district.
Aoraki Tourism, which will be led and locally represented by Henrietta Hazlett, will coordinate and promote the Timaru District tourism industry. It aims to the increase Timaru’s share of regional consumer spending.
The initial phase of the new website for the body www.aorakitourism.co.nz has also launched today. It offers a guide to the best things to see and do in the Timaru district and wider Aoraki region.
The website combines data from trusted information sources such as TripAdvisor and enables local businesses and tourism ventures to provide materials and pictures. It will grow over time with the addition of more user data, as well as seasonal curated content.
Timaru District Mayor Damon Odey welcomed the launch of the new body and website, saying with tourism numbers booming it was time to really tell the Timaru District’s story.
“Timaru is a district with so much to offer tourists from our stunning bays to gorgeous country towns, much of it still to be discovered by tourists,” he said.
“I think Timaru has huge potential being a tourism destination as it is so central in the South Island and there are a wide range of things to do both in the city and the surrounding areas.
“Many towns struggle with the amount of people coming into town for events, whereas Timaru has the opportunity to increase the scale of events and number of visitors coming here. I’m really excited to get behind this awesome challenge and really make a difference in Timaru.”
The new Aoraki Tourism site is available now at www.aorakitourism.co.nz social media accounts will follow shortly.
Timaru Airport upgrade – stage one completed
The first stage of the $1.3 million upgrade of Richard Pearse Timaru Airport is now open, with the newly sealed car park now in use.
The car park is fully sealed and offers safer pick up and drop off facilities as well as clearer and safer walkways. It will also be more environmentally sustainable, with treatment of all the stormwater run off
It will have 95 general use car parks, with additional parking for people with disabilities, rental cars, people being dropped off and taxis.
Ashley Harper, Group Manager Infrastructure at Timaru District Council said he was pleased that the project was making good progress, with stage two works on the terminal beginning soon.
“The car park is free for all users during the terminal upgrade. Once this is complete we will be introducing a $5 per day parking charge, which, amongst all the airports that charge for parking, is still the lowest charge in New Zealand. It will be free for the first three hours.
“The next stage of the upgrade will see the current 450 square metre terminal increased to almost 600 square metres, with a new baggage collection area, modern decor, better seating facilities, lighting and upgraded entrances and exits. The project is on track to be completed by the end of winter.”
Richard Pearse airport is the main airport in South Canterbury, with daily flights between Timaru and Wellington. It was opened in 1958 as a replacement for the earlier 1930’s era airfield at Saltwater Creek.