NZ well represented in WAF award finals

Finalists for this year’s World Architecture Festival have been announced and once again New Zealand is well represented, with 20 projects named in 14 categories.

Among them Peddle Thorp’s $1.8 billion design of the Bledisloe Quarter for the Auckland Waterfront Consortium, incorporating the proposed waterfront stadium, ‘Arena Aotearoa’. It and the Waitomo Bungy Tower, by Ignite Architects are selected in the Future Projects: Leisure Led Development category.

Bledisloe Quarter would be built by a developer at no cost to the taxpayer in return for the rights to build 2500 dwellings and commercial buildings nearby, as well as the right to re-develop the current Eden Park site in Kingsland. A feasibility study hasn’t yet been done.

Bledisloe Quarter would be built by a developer at no cost to the taxpayer in return for the rights to build 2500 dwellings and commercial buildings nearby, as well as the right to re-develop the current Eden Park site in Kingsland. A feasibility study hasn’t yet been done.

The Bledisloe Quarter features the proposed multi-use waterfront arena, public open space, and mixed-use development.

Peddle Thorp director Richard Goldie says it is an honour to be selected and an endorsement of the innovative thinking behind the Bledisloe Quarter proposal.

“We’re excited to be able to present the design of the stadium and Bledisloe Quarter to the world’s best,” says Goldie. “This is a bold vision that has been recognised on an international level and we’re delighted to be selected as finalists. This an important moment for the project and New Zealand.”

The ambitious proposal would see a 50,000-seat fully enclosed stadium built alongside a redeveloped Bledisloe Wharf.

The ambitious proposal would see a 50,000-seat fully enclosed stadium built alongside a redeveloped Bledisloe Wharf.

The jewel in the crown of the Bledisloe Quarter development is the waterfront stadium, which would be sunk into the harbour and seafloor; and, on its exterior, features steps that run down to the sea. With a roof to ensure no concerts are marred by Auckland’s frequent rainy days, the stadium also allows for views from Rangitoto to Mt Eden through its transparent glass sides.

“The Bledisloe Quarter and the waterfront stadium exemplify what is great about New Zealand and Auckland. It is the product of creative future-thinking grounded in a recognition of the value of our natural harbour, the environment, and our cultural and historical history as Tāmaki Makaurau – the place desired by many. We’re thrilled to bring the concept and designs that result from this collaboration to a wider global audience,” says Goldie.

Nearly half of the stadium would be built on the seabed next to the wharf, in order to leave enough space for a Wynyard Quarter-style property development with apartments and commercial buildings needed to help fund the project.

Nearly half of the stadium would be built on the seabed next to the wharf, in order to leave enough space for a Wynyard Quarter-style property development with apartments and commercial buildings needed to help fund the project.

The next stage for the project is a feasibility stage; the consortium are currently working on progressing that phase.

Other WAF finalists include Jasmax in the Future Projects - Infrastructure section, for the City Rail Link, and LandLAB in Future Projects - Civic - for Tank Park. LandLAB also features in Landscape - Urban for the Avon River Park Terraces + City Promenade in Christchurch.

Category winners will be announced in December in Amsterdam and will go on to compete for the World Building of the Year award or the Future Project of the Year award.