More than 1200 surveyors from all over world are meeting in Christchurch this week for a five day working conference hosted by the New Zealand Institute of Surveyors.
The FIG working week brings together the international community of surveying and spatial professionals to share innovative science with policymakers and stakeholders, and delivers an estimated $2.1 million economic impact for the city.
FIG is short for Fédération Internationale des Géomètres. This has become anglicised to the International Federation of Surveyors.
The event is taking place at Horncastle Arena and Addington Events Centre with a gala dinner on Thursday at the Air Force Museum of New Zealand.
Christchurch and Canterbury Convention Bureau Manager Caroline Blanchfield says the economic impact is enormous.
Later in the month Christchurch is hosting than 450 delegates to the Pacific Association of Quantity Surveyors Congress, another coup for Christchurch, worth another $750,000 to the city over five days.
“Combined these two conferences are worth $2.8 million to the city, with international delegates spending an estimated $350 per night, twice as much as leisure visitors,” Blanchfield says.
“Christchurch is proving a fertile learning ground for land and building professionals, who are looking to the city for new techniques and knowledge.
“When we won the bid way back in 2012 we took a ‘Christchurch Inc’ approach to help convince the surveyors that Christchurch was the perfect destination for their conference. They believed Christchurch would deliver a great learning and visitor experience, despite bidding when the city looked its worst. They had faith in Christchurch that we would deliver and we have,” she says.
As well as attending meeting sessions, the international visitors are also being taken on technical tours of Christchurch’s rebuild, the Arts Centre and the University of Canterbury.