Kiwi architecture on the world stage with 16 designs in the World Architecture Festival


Young Auckland architecture firm Monk Mackenzie designed this sweeping 500-metre long Vivekananda Bridge connecting the ...

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Young Auckland architecture firm Monk Mackenzie designed this sweeping 500-metre long Vivekananda Bridge connecting the southern tip of India to two religious sites on small islands.

Kiwi architects are strutting their stuff on the world stage with 16 projects from nine architecture firms making the shortlist of the World Architecture Festival awards.

The prestigious international competition drawing hundreds of entries offers architects and designers international exposure and the chance to pit their talent against world-class contestants.

Leading national firm Warren and Mahoney have the biggest number of projects shortlisted, with four making the cut.

Two young Auckland firms are hot on their heels with three projects on the shortlist. They are rising stars Monk Mackenzie and landscape architects LandLAB.

The Memorial Bridge, close to Christchurch Airport, was designed by leading national architecture firm Warren and Mahoney.

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The Memorial Bridge, close to Christchurch Airport, was designed by leading national architecture firm Warren and Mahoney.

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Warren and Mahoney Christchurch managing partner Peter Marshall said, “For Warren and Mahoney, this is definitely the best year.”

It had been entering the international competition for the last four years.

“This global festival brings recognition that there are some very good designers working in New Zealand and this is reinforcing that,” Marshall said.

An illustration of an island project in the Viaduct precinct in Auckland designed by urban landscape designers LandLAB

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An illustration of an island project in the Viaduct precinct in Auckland designed by urban landscape designers LandLAB

A distinct Pacific and Australasian design theme was present in several of the New Zealand projects.

“With recognition like this we can foot it on the world stage and are as good as anyone,” he said.

The firms present their projects to a panel of judges who select the shortlist for each of 39 categories in the festival awards. A project may be under construction, completed or a future one.

Of more than 1000 entries this year, 536 projects from all over the world have been shortlisted.

Lincoln University and AgResearch Joint Facility was designed by Warren and Mahoney.

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Lincoln University and AgResearch Joint Facility was designed by Warren and Mahoney.

The four Warren and Mahoney projects are the Memorial Bridge, close to Christchurch Airport, the Waterview Connection project in Auckland, the Lincoln University and AgResearch Joint Facility and the University of Waikato Marae and Multi-Purpose Facility.

Monk Mackenzie has been in business less than five years, and has won two festival categories, one in 2017, the Residential category for X-house in Queenstown, and the Infrastructure category in 2016 for Lightpath in Auckland.

Shortlisted this year is their design for Foodstuffs proposed new headquarters and a sweeping 500-metre bridge, named Vivekananda Bridge, connecting the southern tip of India to two tiny islands that are significant religious sites. Auckland engineering firm Novare were the projects’ structural engineers. Their third project is Te Whau, an Auckland pedestrian walkway, which they designed with the landscape design by Jasmax.

The proposed Foodstuffs headquarters has been designed by Auckland architects Monk Mackenzie.

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The proposed Foodstuffs headquarters has been designed by Auckland architects Monk Mackenzie.

Hamish Monk and Dean Mackenzie said entering this competition was an opportunity to measure their designs against well established and well respected firms world-wide who had hundreds of designers and architects.

The competition helped raise the firm’s profile and secure work internationally. Monk MacKenzie was opening an office in New York in September, they said.

LandLAB’s three shortlisted projects are proposals, director Henry Crothers said.

One, in the “experimental” category, was a small island proposal for the Viaduct precinct for client Viaduct Harbour Holdings, and another was a design for Ponsonby Park. The third was the Queenstown Town Centre Masterplan. This was a strategy and vision document to provide developers with guidance in their developments. Queenstown was not always as elegant an urban experience as it could be, Crothers said.

Other New Zealand projects shortlisted include Beca’s Manukau Bus Station, Opus’ Law and Management Building at Waikato University, He Tohu Document Room designed by Studio Pacific Architecture, and two houses, DNA House designed by Crosson Architects, and Turama, a Rotorua House designed by RTA Studio.

The festival is being held this year in Amsterdam in late November.


 – Stuff



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