LandLAB’s Viaduct Harbour seating prototypes project was initiated to find furniture which would add to the character and functionality of the Viaduct Promenade.
The design objective was to develop a range of seating elements that expanded the range of “occupation opportunities” and visually enhanced the amenity without requiring any substantial rebuilding of the promenade, LandLAB says.
The design solution the team came up with earned an Excellence Award in the Small Projects Category at the 2019 Resene New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architecture Awards. The judges felt this design was an “authentic representation of a small but powerful design project which achieved a creative response to the design brief.”
LandLAB worked with the notion of traditional seafaring, boat building and waka, which reinforces ‘Tamaki herenga waka’ (a place of many waka), when considering the shape and form of the benches and seating elements.
The designers worked with Ngati Whatua representative Mei Hill to test and develop these narratives within the wider context of the masterplan process.
Judges said 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 citation read.
When LandLAB commenced the project the client was intending to upgrade furniture using proprietary components. The studio says this project “embraces a place-based and design-led approach and the ability for Landscape Architects to develop creative, design-led solutions that exceed expectations and respond creatively to complex challenges.”