The redevelopment of this key waterfront site on Marine Parade in Napier has given new life to the area by connecting the city to its coastline and replacing a waterfront carpark with a significant public space that reflects the natural and cultural landscape of the bay. With the adjacent former Marine Land site - which has been redeveloped into a multi-purpose skate, event and entertainment facility - this new coastal public space is injecting activity and energy onto the city’s coastal edge and providing coastal pathway users a reason to stop and engage.
The park includes a mix of complimentary spaces, including structures and vegetation that offer shelter and coastal outlooks; gardens and undulating lawn spaces engaging with the sea and city; a multi-sports court; and a series of reflective and interactive water features that are threaded through the site provide something for all parts of the community and visitors alike. Boffa Miskell led the landscape design, working with Paris Magdalinos Architects and Napier City Council. A key part of the project was developing the landscape and cultural narrative of the site with artist Jacob Scott, who also created the integrated and stand-alone artworks.
The design of the park references the former gravel spit on which the site sits: a threshold between the Pacific Ocean and the former lagoon upon which Napier was eventually developed. The design looks east to the horizon and frames the views and landscape connections to Cape Kidnappers/Mataupo Maui and Mahia Peninsula.
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.
Client: Napier City Council
Company: Boffa Miskell
Boffa Miskell: Nik Kneale, Michael Hawes, Dylan Robinson, Yoko Tanaka, Daniel Whatnall, Heather Wilkins, Kieran Dove
Paris Magdalinos Architects – Marine Land Architect, Lead Consultant Jacob Scott – Artist and Architect