Congratulations to all the 2019 winners.
Click on each project name to view Showcase.
View Awards photos here.
Sylvia Park: Plaza and Dining Lane - Award of Excellence
Wraight + Associates
Kiwi Property Ltd
Shopping malls and their surroundings can be very challenging spaces in which to create landscape spaces. Sylvia Park Plaza and Dining Lane demonstrates how clever design can develop spaces which are inviting and lively, complementing the commercial focus of the mall. The Plaza and Dining Lane caters for a broad range of users and is evocative of a South Pacific setting with colourful planting and a subtropical feel. The planting is well established and goes beyond the standard palette of plants for commercial spaces, offering a unique and carefully curated feel. This feeling is picked up in the furniture design, which has an Aotearoa/Pacific aesthetic. The Podis a highlight of the space, providing the kind of landmark which is invaluable in the sometimes disorientating setting of large malls. As a focus for entertainment and a sculptural form in its own right, the Podterminates the axis that extends out from the mall, and gives visual interest. Overall the project is both playful (Pod, worm-like organic seating form, central mounding) and technically well resolved. The space functions well for different kinds of movements, and the objects like the Podand seating are well crafted/detailed. The Sylvia Park Plaza and Dining Lane is very deserving of the Award of Excellence, recognising the achievement of a vibrant and high quality space within the demands of a commercial context.
Community Design (COMNTY)
Vanuatu Infrastructure Tourism Project - Category Winner
Vanuatu Project Management Unit - Government of Vanuatu, New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs
At the core of this unique project is a renewed and resilient expression of cultural values and sense of place. In addition to responding to the technical engineering focus of addressing coastal interface issues and creating a resilient public space (post Cyclone Pam), the design response required a deep understanding of the local people and culture. With three languages to contend with (Bislama, French, and English), this was a challenging endeavour, but was successfully achieved through a landscape architectural-led design and engagement process. This waterfront renewal project provides an outcome which incorporates local materials and has been constructed utilising local skills and labour (upskilled where required) to provide public gathering spaces which locals feel proud to take ownership of, utilise and become the base for hosting international visitors to their place. The completed project clearly demonstrates success in achieving the stated aspirational objective of becoming a place to share and celebrate the culture of Vanuatu. The success of the Vanuatu Infrastructure Tourism Project is fuelling other local initiatives which is assisting with the ongoing resilience of this proud island nation. Vanuatu Infrastructure Tourism Project was a clear winner as an excellent exemplar of a community design project which promotes best practice in New Zealand landscape architecture, undertaken on an international stage.
Waterview - Category Winner
The Well-Connected Alliance
The Waterview connection project exemplifies a sophisticated design-led approach in order to tackle the immense scale of this infrastructure project. Motorways are by definition linear corridors and present a number of challenges and opportunities, practical and innovative solutions by the design team demonstrate the level of thought applied to ensure positive project outcomes. The design embodies a sense of place in all aspects of the project. Described as the Volcanic highway, the project reflects the rich layers of natural processes and lava fields and unifies these layers through a restorative landscape. Materiality and planting recognise the rocky nature of the volcanic substrate and the concrete environment of a roading corridor, while providing an energised start to a long-term green corridor. The project recognises the opportunities to provide city-wide connectivity, not only for vehicles but pedestrians as well. Continuous pathways/cycleways and water courses have been achieved and there is a feeling of continuity even on the narrowest sections. Through incorporating the various open spaces and parklets and stitching them together around the highway walls the project creates numerous activity areas, each grounded with their own sense of place. The lengthy process required extensive consultation with numerous stakeholders, a wide range of landowners, community and tangata whenua - all no doubt with disparate aspirations. And the team are to be commended on bringing it all together and achieving an outcome which adds to, rather than diminishes the landscape, no more so than at the interchange, where restoration of a coastal forest balances the scale of engineering works, and celebrates the history of the harbour. The scope, vision, thoughtfulness and perseverance of the team makes this project a worthy category Winner.
An Accessible City - Phase 1 - Award of Excellence
The Canterbury earthquakes created a massive upheaval in Christchurch’s CBD but also provided an opportunity to rethink how Christchurch’s urban streets could best cater for the multiple ways people move around and experience the city. The Accessible City project has effectively demonstrated how landscape architects can successfully guide and influence the design of urban transportation infrastructure to emphasise ‘people’ and ‘place’ in parallel with vehicle demands. The project has positively reallocated the road space more equitably across all modes of movement and provided more space for pedestrians and cyclists alongside vehicles. In conjunction with this, the design team has produced a built outcome that treats over 90% of stormwater runoff through roadside rain gardens. The generously sized rain gardens and adjacent planter beds are filled with a bold and innovative planting design, which has combined natives and exotic planting species, including evergreens together with herbaceous perennials to dramatic effect. This discernible ‘greening’ of the city streetscape has had great visual impact, providing an attractive and stimulating ‘garden city’ character to the streets, which has been warmly received by the Christchurch public. A simple but effective hard landscape materials palette has been applied to the streetscape which blends in with the adjacent Te Papa Ōtākaro project, and thus extends the influence of the city greening. Street furniture and other built elements are carefully positioned and well-crafted including bespoke bus shelters. The Accessible City project has created a collection of people-focussed and visually distinctive streets for Christchurch’s CBD and is very deserving of this Award of Excellence.
Vaughans Stream Corridor, Long Bay - Award of Excellence
Long Bay Communities (Todd Properties Ltd)
This project clearly demonstrates what good design can do to elevate pragmatic and often utilitarian infrastructure requirements. Employing a restrained and simple palette the design team have executed a bold and visually striking design response to a stormwater wetland and series of structural landscape elements and bridges. With careful attention to detail and an honesty of approach the built elements display a clarity of thinking and strong design aesthetic. By artfully juxtaposing clearly man-made elements of stormwater function alongside the more natural systems and ecological aspects of the stream environment and surrounding planting, the strengths and beauty of both are displayed. As the development around this area intensifies it is anticipated that the distinctive corten bridges and clean lines will contribute greatly to the identity of the new Long Bay town centre. A creative and well executed scheme that blends a range of functional, environmental, and ecological objectives which, with continued attention paid to community use of the area, will achieve a high-quality recreation and amenity asset.
Barry Curtis Park Plaza - Category Winner
From the elevated clean structural lineal forms of the pavilion framework, to the plaza form and the soft base of planting on which that frame rests, the components of this project comfortably complement each other. The materiality is robust and simple, chosen and carefully laid out to withstand the rigours of multiple use yet still providing a variety of space and shelter options. In the wider context, the pavilion and plaza serve as a visual marker, an elevated playful structure within the wider open play spaces of the park, providing a central community focus for meeting, rest and refuge. The collection of water and the manner in which the water is treated and stored gives credibility to the structure, anchoring it and connecting it to the land. This design successfully brings together and celebrates a collaboration of elements, proudly displaying the best of landscape architecture.
Discovery Garden - Award of Excellence
Wellington City Council
From the beautifully crafted entry, to the pavilion and the terraced gardens, Discovery Garden provides a richness of delight and detail. The project responds to the physical complexities of the site and achieves a variety of experiences amongst challenging grades and levels. The materiality is clever and innovative, from the bamboo water race to the punga walls, the metal screening and the raised gardens, no detail is left untouched. The contribution from the community involvement in the design process is evident and that input is weaved through the form and character of the garden. Discovery Garden achieves its goal as a living classroom with ease and confidence, providing an appropriate and playful platform for the principles of sustainability.
Home of Compassion - Award of Excellence
Studio Pacific Architecture
Sisters of Compassion
The design and transformation of the Sisters of Compassion site impressed the judges on many levels. The design responded to a site character that maintains a domestic in scale yet is required to comfortably accommodate a variety of users, from individuals to large formal groups, providing spaces appropriate to the site and tranquillity where required. The sequence of arrival has been well crafted, providing a natural flow to the heart of the site. The detailing is meticulous; from the use of text in hard landscape, the containment and flow of water, the selection and placement of lighting, to the planting, every detail has been considered. Special attention has been paid to the underlying historic context, weaving that subtly into the site. It is apparent that the design team respected and responded to the client brief on all levels. The judges did note that this is still a young garden and the creative planting framework will only improve over time.
Landscape Publications (LPUB)
Whāngārei Living Roof Guide - Category Winner
4Sight Consulting Limited
Whāngārei District Council
The Whāngārei Living Roof Guiderepresents a substantial piece of applied research, which is useful to both the profession of landscape architecture and to the wider community. It has the potential to make considerable impacts in the built landscape, and the accessibility of the publication will help to establish best practice approaches. The generosity of sharing research in this way is exemplary, and contributes to the spirit of stewardship and collective concern for the landscape. Having contextually-relevant research on a particular landscape type, such as a living roof, is valuable for New Zealand landscape architecture. Often the technical guides for landscape construction and planting are derived from overseas examples, and the Whāngārei Living Roof Guidehighlights the importance of providing guidance for the local setting to help improve practice here in Aotearoa. Living roofs present many challenges, in the need to understand structural design requirements, as well as the planting media, the plants, water and drainage. And they also have multiple opportunities, in reducing reflectivity, slowing runoff and adding to the aesthetic qualities of space. The Guide, which is written and illustrated as both a technical document and in a format easily understood by non-experts, will help in addressing the challenges and realising the opportunities to improve health and well-being in our urban environments.
X-Section Journal – Collaborate - Award of Excellence
Chantel Clayton, Alexander Luiten, Danyon Robertson, Pip Walls, Unitec Institute of Technology
Unitec Institute of Technology
The X-Sectionjournal’s issue 7, Collaborate, celebrates the coming together of students, academics, and professionals, to express a range of viewpoints on landscape architecture. As a student-led project it demonstrates the importance of the voice of youth within the profession, as critics, commentators, and collectors of ideas. Including articles that capture the cultural diversity, range of scales, and multiplicity of settings for landscape architecture, the journal conveys a vibrancy within the profession. The journal gives voice to perspectives that might not otherwise have a public profile, including the work of students through thought-provoking ideas that can be freely expressed through this journal. As a well-produced, coordinated and presented annual publication, it provides a vehicle for the promotion of the Unitec programme, as well as broader dissemination of landscape architectural projects and perspectives. The publication is a worthy addition to the bookshelves or coffee tables of design-minded people. This Award of Excellence recognises the substantial effort made by the students and their collaborators to bring this issue together, and to encourage future publications which build on dialogues about landscape architecture.
Riddiford Gardens and Civic Park, Lower Hutt - Category Winner
Hutt City Council
Riddiford Gardens and Civic Park is an extensive and beautifully implemented urban park, which has re-energised the civic heart of Lower Hutt City. Guided by an overarching landscape masterplan, the project has successfully evolved over a 3-stage phased implementation. The collection of contemporary spaces have been effectively woven into an established landscape framework, provided by the modernist civic architecture, Opahu Stream and significant mature trees. The success of each phase of the project has built community and political momentum for on-going redevelopment. Each space with the Gardens and Civic Park caters for a broad range of users, and different activities including commemoration, active recreation, play, and botanical display. The judging panel particularly appreciated the new civic plaza, providing a new space for people to gather and specifically catering for the youthful members of the Lower Hutt community. The meticulous detailing and consistency of quality materials was evident in the pavement, furniture and water feature elements. These establish continuity across the project and successfully tie together the old and new. A diverse and interesting planting design combining natives and exotics add richness and sits comfortably alongside the hard landscape. This provides not only a functional response but a clever botanical experience. The judging panel were impressed with how the Riddiford Gardens and Civic Park project has breathed new life into Hutt City. The client and landscape architects have undertaken a strategic redevelopment and refocusing of the existing public park and garden space to create a contemporary urban park for all locals and visitors.
Te Auaunga Oakley Creek - Award of Excellence
Te Auaunga Oakley Creek is a superb example of a design-led & holistic approach to landscape architecture. The project combines landscape, ecology, cultural, engineering and community considerations to create a beautiful recreational asset for local residents while also providing a functional and resilient drainage infrastructure solution. The project has injected significant energy into a public open space that was previously underutilised. Through working closely with local residents and local iwi through the design and implementation, the landscape architects have transformed the area into a playful and unique community park with strong community buy in. Generous native planting, boardwalks, stream crossings and natural playground elements create a relaxed and playful atmosphere. By working with the lava flow rock forms and timbers uncovered during construction of the stream corridor, the designers have allowed the natural landscape to be revealed and inform the final park layout. Subtle but effective references to cultural narratives and local stories are beautifully executed to create a unique and rich local identity for this park space. Te Auaunga Oakley Creek illustrates how a high quality design can be created without a massive budget. The project will provide long lasting enhancement to ecological and social sustainability in the Mt Roskill area, and is thoroughly deserving of this Award of Excellence.
Marine Parade - Award of Excellence
Napier City Council
This well-crafted entry exemplifies excellence in integrated design, bringing together people and place. There is a visible weaving together of dynamic coastal processes with an indigenous narrative that resonates with the beauty of the whenua, and the people of the region, both tupuna (ancestors) and today. The design unifies a series of destination spaces along Napier’s waterfront by encompassing vibrant and lively activities that enable reflection, recreation, play and multi-purpose events. The project successfully recognises the harsh and rugged coastal environment by utilising a suite of proven hard-wearing materials complemented by a native coastal planting palette. The design celebrates Kahungunu whakapapa (genealogy) by purposefully highlighting key focal points through strong axial alignments towards the water and sites of significance. Māori artwork is not only visible but integrated to support the larger landscape strategy. The judges recognise this level of conscious attention to detail through all layers of design.
Chimpanzee Park - Category Winner
In response to a unique and challenging brief, with primates as the primary client, this design response excels at blurring the ‘enclosure boundary’ to effectively allow for an improved visitor experience and provision of chimp habitat. This is achieved by building on the opportunities and constraints of the zoo’s topography within the wider Wellington Town Basin, as well as the requirement to utilise existing enclosure buildings, materials and enclosure space. The captive environment has been successfully enhanced while strengthening educational and conservation outcomes. Attention to detail through material use and plant selection is clear, alongside the care in understanding how the chimps and the public will utilise spaces both inside and outside the enclosure. Robust detailing and specifications for sustainable materials to fulfil the zoo’s carbon zero certification is celebrated: hardwood timber poles recycled from Wellington’s old trolley bus network; chunky ropes reclaimed from Centre Ports tug boats; and swings and hammocks made from recycled hoses donated by the NZ Fire Service. Mimicking the ‘play equipment’ within the enclosure for visiting chimps on the outside – separated only by glass – is also a successful outcome. Not only is Chimpanzee Park a highlight for visitors to Wellington Zoo, it also provides for a visual connection out to the cityscape allowing chimps to survey their wider habitat. The judges were also conscious of the efforts undertaken during construction, including minimising disruption to the chimps during the seven week construction period, overcoming access issues and stressing the importance of the bespoke materials and outcomes to the contractors. This project has set a high bar for design excellence in Aotearoa.
Mara Hupara Playground - Award of Excellence
As part of a wider Te Auaunga stream restoration project, a unique opportunity has been realised through the creation of a playspace which responds to ngā taonga tākaro (traditional artefacts) and ngā aro tākaro (traditional play items) utilising play elements from natural and recycled materials. Establishing a design brief and shared vision through engagement with community and mana whenua, through a high level of goodwill and trust, resulted in a strong desire for the mara hupara concept – natural play and playing in nature. The skill in bringing these ideas into reality through the design process is evident, not only through the physical outcomes, but also through the positive feedback received from those people that experience this place. This project challenges the traditional model of playground design by looking at the landscape as an interactive canvas where subtle but conscious interventions have created an integrated and highly valued space, reflecting the wider aspirations of the Te Auaunga project, within tight budget constraints. This Award of Excellence acknowledges the innovation and bespoke nature of this project – significant attributes for landscape architecture in Aotearoa.
Project Based Landscape Planning (PROJ)
Waikeria Prison Landscape - Award of Excellence
NZ Department of Corrections
In response to a challenging timeframe set by the New Zealand Department of Corrections, the expertise of landscape architects in the guiding of initial site selection, followed by setting key site planning and design parameters, proved to be critical in the overall success of this important project. The ability to work at a variety of scales, in order to document and understand the landscape resource was evident in the outcome and is commended. To supplement this analysis, the understanding and response to local knowledge sourced through effective engagement with the local community and mana whenua, has proven to form a key to the success of this landscape planning project. Too often, projects such as this fail to fully grasp the importance of effective engagement in order to assess the landscape as experienced by those that live in and whakapapa to the whenua. Given the speed at which this project was to be delivered, the skill of the landscape architectural experts involved is demonstrated, resulting in the weaving of client expectations with community benefit and remediation of the landscape. Importantly, the project also recognises that landscape management is enduring and does not stop once the consenting phase and even the design has been completed. To this end, the benefits of effective early engagement continues into the future through mechanisms for ongoing kaitiakitanga. This project is worthy of an Award of Excellence as it is a solid example of how the landscape architectural experts have utilised all of the tools in their tool box to achieve a successful overall landscape change, benefitting long term both the environment and the people that live within it.
Residential (RES1 RES2)
Garden at The Hills - Category Winner
Suzanne Turley Landscapes
Sir Michael Hill
The Garden at the Hills is a boldly designed and beautifully executed New Zealand garden. A series of curated garden and entertainment spaces have been skillfully sited around the house culminating in a mix of both intimate private garden rooms and other areas that open up and engage with the surrounding landscape. This use of engagement skillfully brings the mountains in as part of the garden experience. Carefully crafted earthworks and hard landscaping underpin the design and have seamlessly blended the garden in with the surrounding landscape. Bold organic, curving forms contrast but sit comfortably alongside the modern architecture and swimming pool. The landforms are clothed with an exceptional planting design which is a showcase for how the ‘New Perennial’ movement in planting garden can be executed here in New Zealand. Bold drifts of herbaceous perennials, ornamental grasses, and natives supported by clipped hedging and specimen trees provide year round colour, movement and structure. There is evidence of careful seasonal planting and as such, one feels in this garden that no day would feel the same, with the planting in constant evolution throughout the year. Each season in the garden has its own moment and its own feeling. With immaculate execution and superb ongoing maintenance and development the Garden at the Hills is a significant benchmark in contemporary New Zealand residential garden design and is a clear category winner.
Long Bay - Award of Excellence
Todd Property Group
Long Bay is a successful example of how landscape architecture can deliver a quality large scale residential development on a greenfield site by responding to natural context and ecology, and through a sensitive approach to stormwater management. Landscape amenity has been designed to be at the heart of the neighbourhood, and the combination of the adjacent natural environment together with the open spaces and ‘Garden Streets’ create a compelling sense of place for residents. Intelligent use of hard landscape materiality and the generous native planting within the streetscape promote the aspiration of ‘streets as public spaces’. In addition, the careful consideration of on-street parking ensures that generous space remains for other street based activities. The integration of water sensitive urban design throughout the development is impressive in its scope, informing different densities of development across the site through to incorporating rain gardens within the streets. Riparian and re-vegetation planting cover extensive areas of the site, improving ecological functionality and increasing habitat and biodiversity. The success of the design approach at Long Bay is evident through its use as an exemplar for Auckland Council Code of Practice and Long Bay is very deserving of this Award of Excellence.
Small Projects (SMALL)
Viaduct Promenade Interventions - Award of Excellence
This creative small project showcases a design solution that was collaborative and innovative from concept to built structure. The inclusion of a waka-based design to connect the seating solution back to the significance of the location in Tāmaki Makaurau was simple and effective. The design is characterised by intentional and deliberate over-scaled elements for groups and social seating spanning two different levels, and creates an engaging atmosphere that aligns with the character of the viaduct. The judges felt this design was an authentic representation of a small but powerful design project that achieved a creative response to the design brief.
Eva + Leeds Street Upgrage - Award of Excellence
WCC Urban Design Team
Wellington City Council
An area of tight alleyways and small lanes in downtown Wellington was transformed in this revitalisation project. As part of a wider vision of developing connections and inviting pedestrian usage through the city’s laneway network, the Eva and Leeds Street laneways were brightened and enlivened with a range of treatments. In highlighting the historic narratives of the location and drawing attention to the range of building types and spaces, the project adds value to the urban fabric. Working collaboratively between the public and private sector created opportunities to develop artistic interventions, planting and a sense of quirky fun. The project avoided making the laneways feel too tidy or overdeveloped, maintaining a sense of urban grunge that adds to the character of the area. Graphic appliques, and fun planting forms that have embraced participation by those in the area, and have made a lively and enticing zone within the city. The Award of Excellence recognises how the project is a great example of what can be achieved through simple means.
Strategic Landscape Planning (STRAT)
Queenstown Town Centre Masterplan - Award of Excellence
Queenstown Lakes District Council
The Queenstown Town Centre Masterplan is a positive approach to managing change in an area of physical constraints, economic pressure, unique landscape, and a widely diverse community. The town centre’s particular issues have been competently and comprehensively addressed, and the Masterplan sets out a realistic framework for growth along with the protection and enhancement of the area’s intrinsic features and characteristics. The well-articulated place-based strategies and design guidelines reflect extensive consultation and collaboration, with the prospect of enhancing and protecting the character and qualities of the unique landscape. The Masterplan documents are commended for the clearly set out analysis, principles and strategy, supported with informative diagrams and graphics, which are well-structured and easy to navigate. The level of engagement with stakeholders and the community has achieved a shared vision for the future. The project demonstrates the significant role which landscape architects can play in urban design strategy and in moulding the urban landscape, leading a multidisciplinary project through complex issues. The result is a clearly reasoned and visionary group of documents that provide the foundations for the management of Queenstown’s future character as it continues to grow and mature.
The Isle of Iwi: The Matiu Island Development Project - Category Winner
Claudia Boyo, Victoria University of Wellington
This impressive winning entry presents a confident and compelling design and development plan for Matiu Island in Wellington Harbour. The work is beautifully presented and exhibits a clarity of thinking that sensitively weaves together a number of complex threads into a cohesive narrative that seeks to restore the cultural identity of this significant landmark. The project successfully demonstrates a design solution in which Māori values, customs, and traditions, significant to mana whenua of the Island, are integrated alongside existing European landmarks. These threads are then analysed and used to shape important environmental and social objectives through design outcomes which celebrate the Island’s unique sense of place. By cleverly combining recreation and ecology with meaningful and appropriate cultural narratives, the proposal presents a strong vision for the Island that is innovative, entirely appropriate, and deliverable. A clear standout in a field of very high-quality submissions, the jury commend Claudia for an outstanding and highly professional piece of design work in response to a well-considered analysis for such an important motu.
Kotuku Whakaoho - Award of Excellence
Sylvia Robinson, Lincoln University
The panel commends this entry for excellent ‘blue sky thinking’ backed up with a well-considered and well-presented suite of drawings and design rationale – showing a maturity of comprehension. An ambitious vision set out to achieve a celebration of the symbiotic relationship between tourism, the natural environment and the local culture by creating a revived destination. These lofty ambitions were then underpinned with a series of clear and achievable goals. The translation of these goals into tangible design outcomes – through innovation and the use of appropriate materials and vegetation – set out a very promising attempt at delivering a successful outcome. Obviously, many hours of work has gone into delivering this design response, with much thought given to understanding and responding to sense of place and in delivering innovative solutions to meet the brief. It is refreshing to see students pushing the boundaries and testing ideas, some of which might not gain traction in a ‘real world’ project, but this is the time to explore as a designer. The design, in particular the detailing for the focus area, is competently and confidently handled and presented with very good plan graphics, diagrams and sketches. Overall, from an excellent understanding of the site, this design responds well to a complex brief and is worthy of commendation.
Whispering Tales - Award of Excellence
Hannah Carson, Victoria University of Wellington
Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa
In setting out to enhance cultural landscapes and indigenous values using Augmented Reality, this entry sought to use technology to reconnect oral narratives to indigenous people and the wider public. Using the Wairarapa region as a case study, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa participated in the research which sought to unravel hidden narratives, providing both oral and visual information on their connections to the Wairarapa environment. The research proposed that with the use of mobile phones, this new layer of association could be seen while retaining the existing landscape, allowing a deeper and broader engagement with New Zealand’s landscapes. The methodology, analysis, and evocative illustrations were clear and well documented. The judging panel are hopeful that future opportunities will allow Hannah to further develop and apply these techniques. Overall the panel felt that the entry was innovative and relevant. The research approach was compelling, and engagement with local Iwi was in itself a narrative worthy of further exploration. A confident and competent entry, well deserving of its Award of Excellence.
Unbuilt Visionary (UV)
Ferry Basin - Category Winner
Set within Auckland City’s prime, albeit heavily modified, urban coastal edge where visitors and locals arrive, depart and congregate, the Ferry Basin design entry cleverly and innovatively seeks to reclaim, expose and interpret the previously lost coastal intertidal ecologies. This visionary design is well researched, documented and presented. It also successfully demonstrates how lost human and natural relationships can be re-established and displayed within the context of this strategically important urban edge. In the opinion of the judging Panel the implementation of this visionary entry is achievable and would become a point of interest and focal point on the downtown Auckland waterfront. The use of a series of elevated apertures exposing dynamic intertidal ecologies provides a unique and special experiential connection to the harbour edge, and its natural process and systems. The text and supporting graphics are clear, self-explanatory and well presented. This carefully considered entry set out to tell a story of discovery and in the opinion of the judges, achieves this aim. A deserving winner of the Unbuilt Visionary category.
Te Whau Pathway - Award of Excellence
Auckland Council and Auckland Transport
This deceptively simple form provides a highly creative, beautifully crafted and innovative solution for connectivity between Auckland City and its western suburbs. The walkway impressed with its simplicity and practicality, its ability to accommodate future sea level change, its ease of construction and accessibility and its opportunity for education. The form of the walkway meanders gently through the urban landscapes and edges referencing and celebrating the ecologies of mangrove and stream whilst avoiding the temptation to overstate its form and scale. Overall this vision is inspiring and provides an exceptional opportunity for the enhancement of community and connection that hopefully will come to fruition in the future.
Ponsonby PARK+ - Award of Excellence
254 Ponsonby Road Community Group
Ponsonby Park is an innovative entry that brings together the integration of contemporary design and local community, capturing a vibrant space that challenges the notion of traditional parks. The adaptive reuse of buildings and acknowledgement of activities in the space gives reference to great collaboration and an understanding of the urban complexities and character of the location. The thematic layering of the buildings enhances community facilities and provides conscious social programming to the design. Thoughtful consideration has been given to the fusion of buildings with lawn and placement of mature specimen trees to provide a transition and softening from the urban streetscape to engaging park space. It is complemented by the innovative approach to sustainability and the integration of stormwater filtration and remediation and potential green energy. The entry clearly demonstrates and highlights the landscape architects’ analytical and collaborative skills, along with design flair and ability to deliver appropriate outcomes.
Urban Spaces (URB)
Te Papa Ōtākaro Avon River Park - Category Winner
LandLAB, Boffa Miskell, WSP-Opus, and Rough & Milne
Matapopore Charitable Trust, Ōtākaro Limited
Extending from the Hospital to the west, through to Fitzgerald Avenue in the east, Te Papa Ōtākaro is made up of a series of sub-landscapes, each with their own character and focus – but with an overall sense of coherence. Although the product of a range of practices, Te Papa Ōtākaro maintains a feeling of unity and substance throughout. The hard landscape is technically strong, well-executed, and excellently crafted. There are many places along the linear Park which invite people to pause and enjoy the river precinct. Complementing this strength of detailing is a vibrant planting palette, appearing in rain gardens and other plantings throughout the park. Ecological enhancement is evident in the quality of the water and character of the river margins. Māori cultural expression is a vibrant component of Te Papa Ōtākaro, with designed elements that root the landscape in this place, with elements like the whāriki (woven mats) which give a rhythm and depth of content to the river’s edge. This foregrounding of Māori design contributes strongly to Christchurch’s journey out of the earthquakes and into a place which honours its history, celebrates diversity and foregrounds well-being. The development of generous paths for pedestrians and cyclists has enlivened the city centre, providing routes that are experientially varied and interesting, and unified by the presence of the River throughout. This extensive, well-coordinated, and expertly detailed park re-unites the city with its river, and is a worthy winner of the Urban category.
Access to Water, Tauranga Waterfront - Award of Excellence
Tauranga City Council
This project is a relatively small part of the Tauranga waterfront and harbour but punches well above its weight with regard to its potential influence on the Tauranga CBD. The design connects, encourages and enables public access to the water, achieving that seamlessly and creatively. The usual hard division between land and sea has been elegantly moderated through this sculptural intervention, enabling all ages to rediscover the harbour and the pleasures of the water. The judges were impressed by the simplicity and sinuosity of the concrete steps, carefully inserted into the existing sea walling. Particular note was made of the inclusion of curved concrete and the embellishment of the steps, through the discrete integration of text and prose. These gentle steps allow all ages to dip their toes in the water.
The jetty forms are strong and perfectly detailed, creating further playful opportunities for the direct interaction with the harbour. The widening of the waterfront walkway, and its thoughtfully incorporated graded access to the water, enables all levels of ability to experience the sea. Lighting effects make this design further come alive outside at night. The design response to tidal variation is also well considered and integrated into the step design. The project’s influence extends beyond the immediate area. By the careful transitioning of the access into the water, the perception of the harbour landscape grows as the eye travels to encompass the far shore, no longer contained and constrained by the vertical break of the hard sea wall. An elegant and robust piece of design on the harbour edge, potentially a catalyst for further enhancement and an excellent addition to Tauranga, enhancing the city as a destination and respecting all that use it.
The Quays - Award of Excellence
Studio Pacific Architecture
Marlborough District Council
Like many towns throughout Aotearoa New Zealand, Blenheim had turned its back to its river. The Quays is an important part of stitching the town and the river back together. The simple gesture is consistent with the urban scale of Blenheim – a place very different to the downtown settings of our major cities. A simple palette of hard and soft materials is used in making the link between the higher land of the urban area, down to the river’s edge and opens up the open space potential at the end of the main street. Difficult levels have been managed, providing north facing grassy slopes and a formed accessible gradient zig-zagging down the slope in a way which is inviting to all users. The movement down the zig-zag offers a range of views up and down the river, and is well-complemented by plants which reinforce the location in Marlborough, and generally transitions effectively to the existing riverside boardwalk, where raised flood levels can be an issue for materials and plantings. The sculptural aspect of these plants will be enhanced with time, and the design will continue to develop its strength. Gabion baskets filled with local stone also ground the design in place, and give the necessary structural and visual weight while complementing the riverside location. The most powerful part of the design is the look-out, which takes advantage of the difference in levels to project a jetty-like form out into space. This high-level viewing point adds some drama to the design, and provides vistas to the surrounding landscape, especially to the river environment. The Award of Excellence recognises a skilful contemporary design carefully inserted into Blenheim’s townscape, and makes a major contribution to the accessibility, celebration and enjoyment of the Taylor River and its significance to the township.
Enduring Landscape Award (ENDURE)
Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools - Category Winner
Chris Glasson, Glasson Huxtable Ltd
Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools is an iconic designed landscape. Interweaving the original formal hot pools with a more naturalistic design in the 1990s, the Thermal Pools have retained their signature character through the continued expansion of the complex. The mix of spaces, including varying forms, water depths, and vegetation, provides visitors with a range of itineraries through the site. Resonating with the surrounding landscape, the pools’ design has a strong sense of place, with reference to natural and cultural scenic elements. Amidst the rock-edged pools, tussocks, cabbage trees and kowhai, it is not difficult to imagine you are high in the surrounding mountains, immersed in the distinctive landscape. The careful attention to the selection of planting has not only ensured that it authentically echoes the surrounding context, but also that it continues to look good, year after year. The planting provides a unifying element throughout the complex, and sculpts the wider area into smaller and more intimate spaces – while still allowing the eye to travel to the historic exotic plantings and the majestic mountains beyond. Critically, the design established in the 1990s has proven to be robust, accommodating increasing visitor numbers, technical changes, and developments in the operation of the complex. The Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools is a worthy recipient of the Enduring Landscape Award, demonstrating sensitive response to place, excellence in the design of planting and hard materials, and a robustness of design that has seen it become one of New Zealand’s exemplar tourist landscapes.
Te Auaunga Oakley Creek - Category Winner
Te Auaunga Awa Oakley Creek Park embodies the principles of sustainable management and has been well conceived from the outset, with clear goals and objectives to achieve sustainability outcomes through a variety of initiatives and at a range of scales. The landscape architects involved have clearly been instrumental in leading the design process and guiding their client and others on the project team to achieve these goals. The completed project outwardly demonstrates sustainable management of the landscape, achieved through the restoration of natural processes, ecology and natural character, remedying past land management mistakes. Natural materials and bio-engineering techniques enable the rehabilitation of a previously degraded urban waterway through stream daylighting and appropriate planting (locally sourced and grown), assist with flood management and mitigation. Active mana whenua and community engagement, involvement and education has also been instrumental in promoting the sustainability benefits of this transformational project. Coupled with the natural restoration initiatives, the project also delivers wider community benefits in the form of improved access and connectivity via new pathways and opportunities for active and passive recreation, alongside improved amenity values for local people and visitors to the area. The project establishes a long-term approach towards landscape management and ensures the benefits adopted will continue to mature and evolve to bring a richness to this landscape and help to heal not only the site, but also the wider catchment. The project outcome at Te Auaunga Oakley Creek is one that “walks the talk”achieving comprehensive restoration of the landscape and being a best practice example of sustainable land management, and a worthy winner of the Sustainability Award.
Te Karanga o te Tui (TKT)
Ātea a Rangi, Waitangi Regional Park - Category Winner
Wayfinder Landscape Planning & Strategy, Boffa Miskell
Hawke's Bay Regional Council
Ātea a Rangi Star Compass and wetland restoration is a triumphant cultural landscape and environmental project giving rise to the knowledge and understanding of Māori sky lore. The location at Waitangi Regional Park and the wider coastal shores of Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa provide a poignant setting to discover and practice traditional Māori celestial navigation techniques. It also provides a place for people of all cultures to reconnect with the natural processes of the surrounding world in the Aotearoa context. The sky, sounds, winds, coastal smells and connections through pou to the greater landscape contribute to a tangible and deeper understanding of Te Ao Māori. The project site, once a car park and informal camping area, was given the goal to create a place that engaged people with culture and restoration of the fragile coastal environment. Over three years the Hawke’s Bay Regional Council and its project partners developed a vision, fund raised, and undertook restoration of the coastal wetlands and tidal channels, to restore Mana to Waitangi park. Lead carvers Nathan Foote and Philip Belcher carved the compass, and Piripe Smith who donated his time to the project noted his vision to gather and pass on the traditional knowledge within Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa and wider Aotearoa. Ātea a Rangi is accompanied with useful and appropriate signage that strikes the right balance between providing enough information without dominating and detracting from experience of the site. In drawing in the wider landscape, the sky, and creating a space and resource to expand knowledge of Te Ao Māori, the Ātea a Rangi Star Compass project is a worthy winner of Te Karanga o te Tui Award.
Te Auaunga Oakley Creek - Award of Excellence
Te Auaunga Oakley Creek is an excellent example of community collaboration and design-led approach to enhancing environmental and cultural narratives of the site. The project required vision to enable 1.5km of piped tributaries and eight hectares of open space to be restored into an attractive and inviting naturalistic stream corridor. Te Auaunga Oakley Creek has been restored to provide a sense of natural character to the stream corridor and cultural identity to the open space park. The subtle details of the design – the stream side planting, informal stepping stone stream crossings, pattern detailing in the boardwalks and seats, and natural play areas – all combine to present a design narrative that provides unique sense of place. The community collaboration and input is evident, through traditional play and use of the Ngā Taonga Tākaro, incorporation of children’s art work, and members of the community being present and active kaitiaki of the park. Mana has been restored not only through ecological restoration, but by ownership of the community through appropriately naming the park, design artwork, and creating a sense of pride. The project is applauded for its use of the space as an opportunity to deliver manaakitanga, a place for welcome. There is a sense of community belonging and of a welcoming to visitors. The addition of an outdoor classroom space and community fale further add to the heart of the space. Te Auaunga Oakley Creek is worthy recipient of an Award of excellence, exemplifying the strength a community working collectively in a design-led project.
Te Papa Ōtākaro Avon River Park - Supreme Winner
LandLAB, Boffa Miskell, WSP-Opus, and Rough & Milne,
Matapopore Charitable Trust, Ōtākaro Limited
Te Papa Ōtākaro is not only the largest public realm project undertaken in Aotearoa New Zealand, it has also involved many landscape architecture practices and other collaborators, working within the complex context of the re-building of Christchurch. The considerable challenges included shifting governance structures, massive disruption of infrastructure, and even the difficulties being experienced within the professional and personal lives of those involved in designing the Park – as the earthquakes and their consequences continued to challenge life in the city. Despite all of the challenges, Te Papa Ōtākaro has emerged as a significant and transformative urban landscape, maximising the opportunity provided by the earthquakes, to develop an exemplary interweaving of urban edge and river. Enhancing the cultural landscape of the city, as well as the ecological and social values, has provided Christchurch with a central core that holds the city together, and re-presents it with a new vision. At the same time as the Park has transformed the River precinct, it has also honoured the traditional heritage elements, such as the Bridge of Remembrance. The Ōtākaro itself has been considerably enhanced, with the river now a healthier and more inviting element of the city to engage with. It is not unusual to see people feeding the eels at the Terraces, possibly an attribute that makes Christchurch’s city centre unique worldwide. The project demonstrates an holistic approach to landscape architecture, drawing in many voices, skills, and knowledge, and creating something of great value to the city of Christchurch. Te Papa Ōtākaro’s scale, collaborative process, cultural and ecological transformation, hard and soft landscape quality, and spatial qualities, are recognised in the award of supreme excellence, the George Malcolm Award.