1km In-River Course with Widened Kerrs Reach

Intermediate Design Scenario for In-River Flat Water Sports Provision with Renaturalised Margins

We have previously explored options for a full FISA course in-river integrated with a renaturalisation of the river edge – the output of this exercise is detailed here.  Recently however concerns have been raised about the level of water impoundment and potential water quality issues with this option and to a lesser extent the off-river option.  

We have therefore explored further in-river options that enhance the current provision for flat water sports in Kerrs Reach, meet the identified needs of flatwater sports in Chch as defined by Regenerate Christchurch and address any water impoundment concerns, but do not meet FISA requirements for an international rowing lake.

This scenario is intermediate between current Kerrs Reach provision and the full in-river course.  It incorporates smaller flatwater course facilities in the Kerrs Reach area by re-engineering sections of the river in different ways.


The maps show how three flatwater facility designs might be integrated into the scenario. These are:

  • Waka ama course 350 m long x 140 m wide.
  • 1 km flatwater competition course 1150 m long x 110 m wide. This provides for a full international sized course for flatwater kayak/canoe and dragon boating competitions, and for rowing at masters level.
  • 2 km training reach including, then extending downstream from, the 1 km competition course following the natural curve of the river. This option requires only minimal river widening additional to the 1 km course. It provides for longer races and training over the 2 km distance similar to historical Kerrs Reach activities (pre-quake). Depths for these options would be about 2m. 

The maps aren’t presented with any edge softening shown. However, as with the full length 2 km in-river course scenario, naturalisation treatments for the river margins could be included (e.g. to improve ecological values, waterway connectivity, dampen reflected wash from water craft etc).

NB: Floodable land maps are also provided with our full course scenario for reference.