25 of New Zealand’s Best Buildings Receive 2015 Canterbury Awards

Christchurch Botanic Gardens Visitors Centre / Patterson Associates. Image © Jeremy Toth

With a record number of entries, the 2015 Canterbury Awards, organized by the New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA), honored 25 Canterbury-based designs spanning 10 categories. The esteemed awards recognize and promote projects that are exceptionally sensitive to both their environment and occupants.  Prevalent in this year’s awards was the theme of rebuilding, as several projects were realized despite earthquakes impeding their construction, resulting in innovative designs that adapted to the unforeseen setbacks.

Among 2015′s top recipients are Warren and Mahoney with six awards, and Sheppard & Rout and Athfield Architects, whose work garnered four and three honors, respectively. All of the winning projects will compete for the NZIA’s highest recognition in the awards program, the New Zealand Architecture Awards, to be announced in early November. See the full list of winning projects after the break.

Shigeru Ban on Growing Up, Carpentry, and Cardboard Tubes

Shigeru Ban’s Cardboard Cathedral in . Image © Bridgit Anderson

He may have risen to prominence for his disaster relief architecture and deft use of recyclable materials, but Shigeru Ban describes his idiosyncratic use of material as an “accident.” Speaking to The Wall Street Journal, the 2014 Pritzker Prize Laureate recalls turning to cardboard tubes as a matter of necessity. “I had to create a design for an exhibition,” Ban told the newspaper, “But I couldn’t afford wood. Instead, I used the many paper tubes from rolls of drafting paper that were lying around. The tubes turned out to be quite strong.” The most prominent of Ban’s cardboard tube structures is Christchurch’s Cardboard Cathedral, built in the aftermath of an earthquake that devastated the city in early 2011. Read WSJ’s full interview with Ban here.

schmidt hammer lassen Reveal Chirstchurch’s New Central Library

© schmidt hammer lassen architects

schmidt hammer lassen architects, together with New Zealand-based Architectus, has unveiled plans for Chirstchurch‘s New Central Library (NCL). An “anchor project” for the city’s 2010 and 2011 earthquake Recovery Plan, the new 12,000-meter library will built by 2018 on the northern edge of Cathedral Square – ´s key civic space defined by ’s Cathedral.

It is hoped that the NCL will become an important gathering space within the city, offering easy access to digital technologies and local heritage collections, as well as exhibition and performance space, a learning center, indoor and outdoor areas of relaxation, and activities for young citizens.

Building 303 / Architectus

© Simon Devitt

Architects: Architectus
Location: Auckland,
Area: 8800.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Simon Devitt

Chrysalis Childcare Centre / Collingridge and Smith Architects

Courtesy of

Architects: Collingridge and Smith Architects
Location: Auckland,
Architect In Charge: Phil Smith, Graham Collingridge, Evan Crighton
Area: 800.0 sqm
Year: 2015
Photographs: Courtesy of Collingridge and Smith Architects

Wakatipu Guest House / Team Green Architects

© Sam Hartnett

Architects: Team Green Architects
Location: Dalefield 9371,
Architect In Charge: Mark Read
Area: 106.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Sam Hartnett

Matai House / Parsonson Architects

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Parsonson Architects
Location: ,
Architects In Charge: Gerald Parsonson, Craig Burt
Year: 2014
Photographs: Paul McCredie

The Treasury Research Centre & Archive / Architectus

© Simon Devitt

Architects: Architectus
Location: ,
Area: 200.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Simon Devitt

Korokoro House / Parsonson Architects

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Parsonson Architects
Location: Wellington,
Architects In Charge: Gerald Parsonson. LBP: Andreas Cherry
Year: 2014
Photographs: Paul McCredie

Longbush Ecosanctuary Welcome Shelter / Sarosh Mulla Design

© Simon Devitt

Architects: Sarosh Mulla Design
Location: , New Zealand
Area: 150.0 sqm
Year: 2015
Photographs: Simon Devitt, Patrick Reynolds

Muriwai Surf Club / Jasmax

© Kenneth Li

Architects: Jasmax
Location: 341 Motutara Road, Muriwai 0881,
Design Team: Euan Mac Kellar, Phillipa Nihotte, John Hawkins, Rose Fox, Sean Munro, Gary Foster, Daniel Lowery
Area: 1582.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Kenneth Li

Olive Grove House / Team Green Architects

© Sam Hartnett

Architects: Team Green Architects
Location: ,
Architects In Charge: Sian Taylor, Mark Read
Area: 156.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Sam Hartnett

Red Architecture Wins Top New Zealand Prize for “Innovative Black Barn”

Modern Barn Form / . Image Courtesy of ADNZ

Red Architecture’s “innovative black barn” has been awarded the ADNZ‘s (Architectural Designers New Zealand) 2014 Supreme National Design Award for its “subtle, economical and clever design.” Located in the beautiful rural landscape of Whatawhata in the Waikato, the project houses a private residence and garage within two “crisp barn-like forms” clad in vertical run steel and recycled bricks taken from the devastation caused by the Christchurch earthquakes.

In addition to the Supreme Award winner, eight designs from across the country were presented Resene Architectural Design at the ceremony. View a glimpse of each awarded project, after the break.

Woods Bagot Reveals Plans for Christchurch Convention Centre

© mir.no. Image Courtesy of

Global design and consulting firm Woods Bagot has revealed its plans to collaborate with Plenary Conventions New Zealand, a consortium responsible for the development of the new Christchurch Convention Centre. The consortium also includes international infrastructure firm Plenary Group, local firms Ngai Tahu Property and Carter Group, Warren and Mahoney Architects, and environmental design consultancy Boffa Miskell. Read on after the break to see additional images and learn more about the proposed plan.

Cities Need Big Changes to Become Bike Friendly

A bicyclist in Vancouver, Canada. Image © Flickr CC User Paul Krueger

A new study has found that cities need to make big infrastructural changes, rather than small ones, in order to become more bike friendly. As this article from Fast Company explains, small increases in bicycle usage lead to more accidents, which in turn makes others afraid to make the switch from driving to riding. However, the study found that heavy investment in cycling infrastructure brings an economic benefit to in the long run, largely thanks to savings from reduced healthcare costs. To learn about the long-term benefits of big biking investments, click here.

Clayton Park School Hall and Administration / Stephenson&Turner

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Stephenson&Turner
Location: Manukau, , New Zealand
Client: Ministry of Education
Area: 860.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Paul McCredie

VUW Campus Hub / Architectus + Athfield Architects

© Paul McCredie

Architects: Architectus, Athfield Architects
Location: , New Zealand
Area: 13000.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Paul McCredie

Mildred & Co / Jose Gutierrez

© Jeremy Toth

Architects: Jose Gutierrez
Location: ,
Area: 300.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Jeremy Toth