There will be 450 more workers in the fledgling Christchurch CBD, with the Christchurch Regional Council taking possession of its new $51 million building.
Environment Canterbury (Ecan), the regional council for Canterbury, took possession of its new premises on Monday.
The five-storey glass and concrete high rise comes with a wide central atrium that filters natural light to open plan offices finished with Southland beech.
Council chief executive Bill Bayfield said his staff would bring some much needed business to surrounding cafes, bars and retailers.
"It feels good to be part of the rebuild of Christchurch.
"We had a lot of options open to us, from Lincoln to out at the airport...overwhelmingly, staff said 'come back into the CBD'."
Commissioner David Bedford said the building was money well spent and the low interest rate the council secured through the Local Government Funding Authority meant borrowing the money was less expensive than it might have been.
The insurance proceeds from the council's former building, that had to be demolished following the 2011 earthquake, did not cover the cost of the new premises which required an $18m top-up.
The office block sits on base isolators that bring it up to 120 percent of the modern building standard and it is heated and cooled by water drawn from an artesian well 100m underground.
The move was prompted by an invitation from the Earthquake Recovery Minister, Gerry Brownlee, to be part of the rebuild and to bring another 450 workers into the fledgling CBD.
It is just the second large office block to be rebuilt in a place better known for empty lots or buildings in various stages of completion.
The council has been run by government appointed commissioners since elected councillors were sacked by the government six years ago, but is moving to a partially elected council this year.
In the spirit of this new era of transparency, it has placed the council chambers, where councillors and commissioners meet, in a prominent corner office on street level, meaning passers-by, or even the odd protest, will be able to see democracy at work.
"We think that transparency is very important.
"This is literal transparency not just figurative transparency.
"People can see us at play and work and that's what it's all about...so it's a bit symbolic," Mr Bedford said.
The building comes with a basement carpark and has been purposely situated across the road from the new bus interchange.
One of those taking advantage of the new location was Mr Bayfield himself, who caught the bus to work on Monday.
The council has responsibility for making sure the buses run smoothly and Mr Bayfield said the experience was a good one, despite him attracting some looks as the only person on his bus in a suit.