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Kenneth F. Weaver

For the benefit of others: Kenneth F. Weaver is the amazing man who has been providing Christchurch pensioner’s low-cost housing for 45 years

When Kenneth F. Weaver first started providing low-cost pensioner housing in Christchurch 45 years ago, he was amassing joy. Daughter Karen and son Craig talk of how thankful and contented their dad has made many older Cantabrians.

Kenneth F. Weaver
Kenneth F. Weaver

Prospective tenants of their one and two-bed units are eligible if they’re over 60, have less than $25,000 to call on and experience genuine housing need. Once there, they can relax, knowing their comfortable accommodation is secure for life. Often such peace would have been impossible to find. Generally tenants leave only if they require rest-home care.
Now numbering 29 units, and in locations including Abberley Crescent, Barbadoes Street, Hills Road and Trist Place, the Kenneth F. Weaver Trust Inc. homes all boast heat pumps, good insulation and tidy garden surrounds. There’s a tenant waiting list for when a unit becomes vacant. The accommodation is now managed and maintained by the next generation of the Weaver family.

Kenneth F. Weaver

It’s obvious that Kenneth F, now 83, had great foresight in establishing such housing, as the need for it has always remained steady. His charitable work was celebrated in 2005, when he received the Queen’s Service Medal for his outstanding contribution to the community.
Find out more by visiting

Regenerate Christchurch

City’s ‘living laboratory’: Christchurch is leading the way post-quake towards a cleaner and greener tomorrow

A green spine extending from the city to sea is poised to set Christchurch apart as a place that is prepared to explore new ways of living with nature – from adaptive housing to sustainable urban agriculture.

Walkways and biking tracks, wetland developments and a variety of other public and private land uses are included in a shortlist of potential options for an area of land known as the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor.
Formerly Christchurch’s ‘residential red zone’, the 11-kilometre stretch of land is nearly twice the size of New York’s Central Park and four times the size of London’s Hyde Park.
Regenerate Christchurch is responsible for developing the regeneration plan for the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor and says a mix of naturally-occurring and new activities has potential to attract up to a million unique visitors a year.
A “green spine” will extend along the river, up to 150 metres wide on each side, with large areas of ecological restoration, wetlands and community spaces. Elsewhere, there will be three significant areas suitable for a variety of potential public and private land uses reflecting themes of food and culture, experiencing nature and activity and play.
“These will create opportunities for school children and researchers to learn about the natural environment to better understand the challenges and opportunities within a truly living laboratory,” Regenerate Christchurch Chief Executive Ivan Iafeta says.
Regenerate Christchurch has developed a refined shortlist that will feature in an upcoming public exhibition. Ivan says implementation of the plan is likely to be the beginning of a 30-year intergenerational programme of work.

Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club building

Architectural life saver: The Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club is riding a wave of award nominations for CoLab Architecture and Bushnell Builders

Already listed on the Honours Board in the new Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club building, CoLab Architecture is now harvesting honours for the project in the 2018 Canterbury NZIA awards, currently shortlisted to win the Public Architecture section.

Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club building

True to its name, CoLab collaborated on design with Aaron Jones of Urban Function Architecture on this authentically community-driven and focussed scheme. The club was built purely with fundraising and donations, with the building industry, the community and the council working together to realise the dream. “It has been a wonderful project and process to be involved with, an extremely successful community project,” says Colab’s Tobin Smith.
Architect Blair Paterson together with Tobin had a unique brief for this building – the location: isolated, the risks: weather, tide and vandalism, the needs: utilitarian, the budget: lean, yet the want was something exceptionally unique. The result is stunning; simple but interesting; elegant but very, very hardy.
The materials are robust and fit the tight budget – which means locally available. The ground floor is concrete block “to account for the fact that the sand dunes are likely to encroach on the site at some point”.
The upper levels are 28mm thick Siberian Larch which can handle the blast of wind-driven sand, and whose colour will dilute into silver over time, blending with the thousand shades of grey evident on so many days in the land of the long white cloud.
The 900 square metre building is actually three wings. The tower contains the control and first aid stations, positioned on the path from the car park to the beach. An external walkway links the next block housing the clubroom and bar plus the replacement Spencerville Community Hall above, with gear storage. Incorporating the hall extends the use of the building from seasonal to year-round. Views and deck are fully glazed east and completely opening to the west. The suite is completed with the third wing hosting changing and bathrooms, offices and gym.
Architect Blair Paterson says, “We would love to be involved in more community projects where we can because while our work is nationwide, Christchurch is our home.”
Bushnell Builders was selected as the main contractor, getting the project across the board with a limited budget through strong buy-in from subcontractors and suppliers. “The construction for this iconic building was a true team effort,” Bushnell Builders Project Manager Brad Austin says.

Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club building “The generosity of subcontractors and suppliers who supported this project requires special mention.”
Bushnell Builders supported this project both in light of the importance of surf lifesaving in the area and supporting the local community. The company prides itself on delivering projects of a high standard while collaborating with clients, consultants, subcontractors and other stakeholders to ensure projects are a successful and enjoyable process.
The Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club building demonstrates the success of this approach and Bushnell Builders congratulates CoLab on the 2018 NZIA nomination and for the success of the project. “As the Larch cladding fades, it will blend with the landscape and the views from the building will add to the grandeur of this iconic building,” Brad says.
“The Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club is a project that we are very proud of and we believe that as a team we have left a great legacy for the club and community.”

Project Partners

  1. CoLab Architecture
    Ph: 03 379 3309
  2. Bushnell Builders
    Ph: 03 344 5972
Giovanni Tiles

A top tiling team: Giovanni Tiles

If you are after premium quality tiles to give your home distinctive flair, then look no further than the 100m2 Giovanni Tiles selection studio at 3 Lester Lane, just off Dean’s Ave, which holds a selection of more than 1000 premium tiles.

Giovanni Tiles

A tile selection studio that recognises the growing interest from homeowners and construction companies alike, Giovanni Tiles has a dedicated team of friendly experts in colour and style to assist you with all your requirements, from tile selection to free measure and quote, and delivery right to your door.
All tiles in the selection studio are sold under the Giovanni brand and sourced from leading tile manufacturers worldwide. “We import our tiles direct which cuts out the middle man, so our prices are very competitive,” Giovanni Tiles owner, Garey Burgess says.
Giovanni Tiles supplies only premium quality porcelain tiles. They feature the latest colours, fashion and textures for every home or commercial environment and, being porcelain means they are durable and keep their as-new look for many years to come.
The selection studio features extensive areas of tile samples from mosaics, to floor and wall tiles, for both interior and exterior environments. Available in all sizes, this gives customers the best possible idea of what tiles are available, and if they don’t have it, they will find it for you!
Giovanni Tiles is able to source other tiles direct from manufacturers and holds more than 40,000m2 on site at all times, so they can deliver to you when you require them.
For more information or to view the comprehensive range, visit or phone 03-423 1696.


A statement in stone: Rocktops delivers handcrafted stone solutions

Combining state-of-the-art technology with creative expertise, Matt Wilson and the Rocktops team are specialists in handcrafted stone products. Supplying and installing granite, marble, engineered stone and Neolith, the company can produce anything from bathroom vanity tops, kitchen, pantry and laundry benchtops, to fire hearths, table tops and BBQ areas.


Working directly with the public, housing companies, interior designers and specialty joiners, the team focuses on a ‘quality over quantity’ approach, says Matt, who took ownership of Rocktops in 2012 after managing the business for many years. “We provide handcrafted detail and extra attention to quality, priding ourselves on the time and care we put into each client’s tailor-made projects.”
With a new workshop based in Waltham, Matt has more than 15 years of experience in the industry and attributes valuing customer satisfaction and standing by all workmanship as essential to the company’s success. Whether your custom project is large or small, the Rocktops team can bring your vision to life and make your statement in stone.
Visit or phone 03-348 9490, 022 620 8684 or email

Hard As Rocks

A heart of stone: Eldorado Stone from Hard As Rocks is a wonderful alternative to other thick and heavy stone cladding products

For the look and feel of real stone, Eldorado Stone provides a stunning appearance, without the weight and cost of the real thing. Hard as Rocks is New Zealand’s exclusive supplier of the product, which is the most realistic architectural man-made stone available on the market – and the world’s biggest selling stone veneer.

Hard As Rocks

Earthquake tested by BRANZ, Hard as Rocks offers the largest range of stone profiles and colour selections available in New Zealand. The company makes it simple, with all stone types the same price, so once you have had your plans priced you can change stone options without having to re- price your new build, renovation or landscaping project. Most profiles are individual pieces, so you can even mix stone profiles and colours, or change the grout colours to give you a truly unique look to suit your project.
Hard as Rocks maintains building compliance and quality control by only using its own licensed applicators, trained not only in waterproofing and stone application, but also in detailing and the little extras that hold true to the eye – guaranteeing a flawless, professional finish. South Island Schist profiles and River Rock are Hard as Rocks bestsellers, but you also have the option to select from other stone profiles from around the world, including Hawaiian Lava Stone, European Castle Stone or English Country Rubble.
Visit the Hard as Rocks display at stand 61 at the Home Ideas Centre, 37 Mandeville Street in Riccarton, to see the options for yourself. Phone 0800 ELDORADO (353 672), 022 043 0541 or email

Lintrathen Gardens

Gardens complex architecture turns heads: Sheppard & Rout’s NZIA shortlisted project Lintrathen Gardens is stunning

Lintrathen Gardens is a multi-unit complex on a large site in Fendalton. Designed by David Sheppard of Sheppard & Rout Architects, it has been shortlisted for the local NZIA awards for 2018.

Lintrathen Gardens

Designed with the intention of articulating the complex interplay between natural elements and contemporary form, it is a refined example of modernist architecture.

Lintrathen Gardens Developer NewUrban Group was thrilled with the work of Sheppard & Rout, an award-winning architectural firm in the heart of the city. NewUrban Group Executive Chair Sir Bob Parker explains, “We wanted the architecture of this project front and centre and we believe that Sheppard & Rout are the best available – they have great works of legacy all over the city.
“David’s input was crucial to its success.”

Lintrathen Gardens Comprising two stand-alone residences and eight spacious townhouses, the homes are scattered amongst protected trees and all have access to the stream.
“They have the feeling of size without necessarily being large which seems to be what the market demands more and more. When I was training one of my favourite tutors said to me ‘with anything you design you should really enjoy living in it yourself’, and that approach remains with me,” David says.

Lintrathen Gardens “There is serenity in the complex. When it comes to design, simplicity is key, we are cautious of fads or fashions – we think of lasting quality, which drives from creating quality of space.”
The striking horizontal lines of the louvres and floating concrete steps up to the decks are eye-catching, yet timeless. This has been a project of excellence for all involved, the end result is a paradise.

Strategic Homes Group

Is building new right for you: Strategic Homes Group on why you should consider a new home build

If you’re in the market for a home or an investment property, we look at why building new is your best option.

Strategic Homes Group

In April, ANZ Economist Liz Kendal was reported in The Press as saying, “Prices for existing houses have increased 50 percent since the start of 2012, whereas we estimate that the cost of a new dwelling, including land and construction, has increased 30 percent over the same period”.
Which suggests building new is a serious consideration for those looking to purchase a house.
We also know many pre-owned houses have some damage. Building from scratch gives you the peace of mind of knowing that, because everything is new, your home is damage-free. You get a brand-new home with a 10-year warranty and know with certainty your home meets building codes and standards.

Strategic Homes Group “When you partner with Strategic Homes for your new-build journey, we’re with you every step of the way,” Director, Andrew O’Donoghue says. “From the foundation to the fixtures, you know exactly what has been specified to create your new home. Week-by-week you see it coming together, with the latest in technology and building materials.”
But there are many other benefits to building new. Who wouldn’t want to build their dream home, choosing the number of bedrooms, bathrooms and living spaces, or delight in choosing your own soft furnishings and appliances? “We believe your new home should fill you with happiness,” co-founder, Karen Pritchard says. “I love working with clients to make this happen.”
A new home is also healthier. Built with the latest in materials, fully insulated with modern double-glazed joinery, new homes are generally moisture and gap-free, drier and warmer. Plus, building new means little or no maintenance costs over the years to come.

Strategic Homes Group
Andrew and Karen: Talk to Andrew to find out what your home building options are on 027 220 6558

“Strategic Homes is your local building company,” Andrew explains. “We know Christchurch extremely well. We’ve been building houses for 17 years and have completed more than 750 homes. Whether a client wants a family home or investment property, we want to build them a home we would be proud to live in ourselves, which is why we believe building new is best.”
To start your new home journey, call Andrew on 03-963 8841 or 027 220 6558, go to, or visit the new Strategic Homes show home, open Saturday and Sunday 12 – 4 at 6 Derek Anderson Place, Longhurst Subdivision, Halswell.

Casa Construction

It’s all about the detail: Casa Construction raises its sights towards the 2018 Master Builder Awards

The team at Casa Construction has had a big year already. A brand refresh, launched in March, has helped to position the business for expansion down south to Wanaka. Now with the Master Builder awards in full swing, Casa is focussed on completing more houses that are as beautiful and well-crafted as this year’s entry, titled ‘Light Luxury’.


Casa Construction

Light Luxury is perched delicately on the Cashmere Hills, with broad sweeping views of the city and beyond through its industrial height windows.
The house itself is simple yet it is the details – courtesy of architect Thom Craig – that set it apart. The Casa team worked collaboratively with both client and architect to deliver the finishes required to ensure those aforementioned details, would sing.
Attention to the details is a particular passion of the Casa team. Managing Director, Jeff Root says, “anyone can build a house but it’s the hundred little things that we do differently that turn a house into a home”.
The team knows that when collaborating with architects this catch phrase becomes even more important. “Our architect partners have a vision. It’s our job to take that vision, fit it to the client’s budget and help realise the dream in the best way possible.”
The 2018 Master Builder Awards for Canterbury will be announced in July, with National awards announced in November. While the Casa team wait for their results, they will begin to apply their gold standard building practices to their first architecturally designed home, on the outskirts of Wanaka.
For more information, go to

Compass Homes

Turning dreams into reality: how Compass Homes work with you to make your dream home your real home

Clients can sit back and enjoy the building experience by choosing Compass Homes. The company’s process is relaxing and enjoyable and the result is a good quality home.

Compass Homes

There are three very experienced Home Consultants at the Christchurch office who understand the emotional investment involved with building a dream home and are great listeners, with the ability to point you in the right direction to transform your dreams into reality.
While you will be spoilt for choice with more than 70 contemporary house plans to select from, each design can be easily customised to meet a client’s needs, wants and dreams. Compass Homes is flexible and can meet a range of needs, with house and land packages available or the company can provide design and build services if you have your own section.
There is an experienced team of designers, engineers and project managers, who are highly skilled at considering the individual building site orientation, budget, and the purchaser’s personal style and future needs.
Three show homes in Christchurch – Kaiapoi, Rolleston and Preston’s Park – allow potential clients to experience the homeliness and style the company offers. The fittings are all high quality and what you see in the show homes is what you get, all-inclusive in the price of your own new home, so no surprises when the account comes in.

Compass Homes Working with a smaller intimate company that focuses on customer service has huge advantages as clients are never ‘just a number’.
The business uses innovative technology to keep the client up to date via an online project management system and that means a client is always aware of progress as it’s happening. The company ethos is strongly focused on the importance of open communication and full transparency throughout the building process.

Compass Homes It is run as a joint venture (not a franchise) between the national owners and the branch owner. Unlike some franchise situations where an ‘all care but no responsibility’ scenario operates, Compass Homes has an ‘all care and all responsibility’ structure. The national owners have a personal liability and responsibility in each branch.
In addition to the 10-year Master Builders Guarantee and the 12-month maintenance period, each branch carries extensive public liability insurance to protect against all events, giving clients the confidence to relax, sit back and enjoy the journey.