29 May 2013 — The adaptive re-use of older buildings was a strong theme in the New Zealand Architecture Awards, announced on May 24.

The New Zealand Architecture Medal, which is awarded to the most outstanding of the New Zealand Architecture Award winners, was presented to The Imperial Buildings, a group of heritage buildings on Auckland’s Queen Street which have been restored and revived by Fearon Hay Architects.

Awards jury convenor and Auckland architect Andrew Barclay said “the conversion of older buildings to new purposes may be a symptom of current economic circumstances, but it also signals a greater awareness of the worth of existing buildings, and of the possibilities they offer to imaginative clients and architects”.

Mr Barclay also said some of the projects the jury enjoyed most “used very little, very well”.

Projects promoting sustainable values and enhancing the civic realm also featured.

Patterson Architects’ six-star Green Star Geyser building in Parnell, Auckland, received awards in both the commercial and sustainable categories, and Athfield Architects’ Te Hononga-Christchurch Civic Building, a six-star -Green Star reworking of a sound but formerly undistinguished building, was also twice-awarded, in the public architecture and sustainable categories.


Te Hononga – Christchurch Civic Building by Athfield Architects Ltd

“Te Hononga – Christchurch Civic Building is an impressive exercise in adaptive re-use and, given Christchurch’s recent circumstances, an especially appropriate and timely exemplar of its genre. Not only does the building substantially occupy an existing structure, thus saving energy embodied in the original construction, it also benefits from the architects’ determination – recognised by the award of a six star Green Star (Built) rating – to reduce operating energy to a minimum. With its innovative and robust technology, its imaginative reworking of interior spaces, and its safe and solid public presence, the building declares the city’s faith in Christchurch’s sustainability,” the judges found.

Geyser, Parnell, Auckland, by Patterson Associates Ltd

“As the recipient of New Zealand’s only six star Green Star (Design) rating, Geyser significantly advances the cause of sustainable architecture. Passive environmental design principles and computer-controlled systems combine to provide pleasant and comfortable working and circulation spaces. Natural daylight is admitted deep into the interior, and a twin-wall façade generates natural heating, by trapping warm air, and cooling ventilation, via convection currents. A manually operated inner façade allows tenants some discretion in controlling their own working environments,” the judges found.

New Zealand Architecture Medal

The Imperial Buildings, Auckland, by Fearon Hay Architects


Cloudy Bay Shack, Blenheim, by Paul Rolfe Architects and Tonkin Zulaikha Greer Architects

Geyser, Parnell, Auckland, by Patterson Associates Ltd

Telecom Central, Wellington, by architecture+


St Cuthbert’s College Performing Arts Centre, Epsom, Auckland, by Architectus

Enduring Architecture

School of Music, University of Auckland, by Hill Manning Mitchell


The Imperial Buildings, Auckland, by Fearon Hay Architects


Lake Hawea Courtyard House, by Glamuzina Paterson Architects

Regent Park Apartments for City Housing WCC, by Designgroup Stapleton Elliott

S House, Mt Eden, Auckland, by Glamuzina Paterson Architects

Waiake Beach House, Torbay, Auckland, by Stevens Lawson Architects Ltd

International Architecture

Solar Decathlon 2011: First Light House, by Victoria University of Wellington, Faculty of Architecture and Design

Planning and Urban Design

Karanga Plaza and Kiosk, Wynyard Quarter, Auckland, by Architectus

Re:START, Christchurch, by The Buchan Group

Public Architecture

ASB Sports Centre, Kilbirnie, Wellington, by Tennent + Brown Architects & SKM Architects in association

Te Hononga – Christchurch Civic Building by Athfield Architects Limited

Rotoroa Shelter & Exhibition Centre, Rotoroa Island, Auckland, by Pearson & Associates Architects Ltd

Whakatane Library & Exhibition Centre – Te K?putu a Te Whanga a Toi, by Irving Smith Jack Architects Ltd

Small Project Architecture

Hut on Sleds, Whangapoua, Coromandel Peninsula, by Crosson Clarke Carnachan Architects (Auckland) Ltd

Wellington Zoo Hub & Kamalas Pavilion, by Assembly Architects Limited

See our story:  Shopping precinct in Christchurch wins NZ architecture award

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.