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Author: Cheryl Colley

Riverside Farmers’ Market comes to life


“We have lived and breathed this project for three years. To see it come to fruition, looking and feeling just as we imagined it, is far more than simply satisfying. It is absolutely thrilling. Now we want the people of Christchurch to love it too.”

 

 

Richard Peebles, Mike Percasky and Kris Inglis – the men behind High St Lanes and Little High Eatery – witnessed the opening of their latest development, the Riverside Farmers’ Market in Christchurch’s city centre, on Monday 30 September.

“We had heard a great deal from overseas about the growth phenomenon that is urban farmers’ markets. Selling local growers’ and producers’ fresh products locally has become a worldwide trend based on the ethics of sustainability and the need to reduce food miles and our carbon footprint. There is a superb example of this concept in Copenhagen that we researched and that convinced us Christchurch was right for a similar venture.”

 

PHOTO: CHRISTCHURCHNZ

 

A development of the scale envisioned right in the heart of the city would not have been possible without the availability of a suitable site. The one viewed as optimal by the property investors was at the intersection of Cashel Mall and Oxford Terrace, occupied by the Container Mall. “This was the beginning of a long process of convincing the right people of the viability of our vision and of eventually negotiating to purchase the site from Ōtākaro Ltd, the Crown-owned company delivering the central city anchor projects.”

 

PHOTO: CHRISTCHURCHNZ

 

An initial concept design with 3D modelling by John Ayres of Creative Studios, Christchurch architectural designers, was modified and tweaked several times. That, along with irrefutable evidence of the benefits of farmers’ markets presented by the three indefatigable partners of the Peebles Group, eventually won the day and the concept could begin to transform into reality. “We demonstrated how much this development could contribute to the regeneration of the central city, to the engagement of Christchurch citizens and to the activation of the entire area.”

 

 

The result is a stunning complex of four buildings interconnected by lanes leading from the Avon River through to Ballantynes. It includes a 3,500 square metre farmers’ market with about 70 vendors and food stalls, as well as laneways with boutique retail businesses. “The complex has a rustic and heritage vibe, reflecting the history of the city and deliberately incorporating recycled materials – rimu, bricks, iron-bark wharf timber, windows, 100-year old wallpaper and even two faces of the clock from the Moorhouse Ave railway station.”

 

PHOTO: CHRISTCHURCHNZ

 

The investors acknowledge that the project could not have eventuated in the way it did without the input of all the consulting firms – DCM Urban Design, Creative Studios, Kirk Roberts, Bonisch Consultants, Novo Group, Holmes Fire, Kirkcaldie Interiors, ThompsonCo, White Associates and the main contractor Consortium Construction. “We have entrusted these specialists with previous developments and once again they have delivered.”

 

PHOTO: CHRISTCHURCHNZ

 

Richard, Mike and Kris want the complex to become the heart of the city, to attract people into town and to keep them there. It won’t be a place purely to buy food and to eat it; it will be a hub, attracting festivals, choirs and events and hosting musicians and handicraft vendors. “We think it is set to become Christchurch’s number one tourist attraction.”

 

 

 

 


 

90 years through guts & grace


The Christchurch City Mission is one of this city’s most respected and active caring organisations. It was born during the start of the Great Depression, is the last of New Zealand’s Anglican-founded city missions, and this month celebrates its 90th birthday.

 

 

With this birthday, the mission will finally tell its story in a specially commissioned book entitled Guts & Grace. “It is a remarkable story of vision, generosity, daring experiment and fruitful partnerships,” says author Geoffrey Haworth. “The Mission’s history is marked by guts – the courage of its staff and volunteers and of those who ensured it survived and grew. It is also marked by grace – the impulse to freely offer assistance to those in need, because grace is what is needed to touch the human heart.”

Matthew Mark, the current City Missioner, echoes Geoffrey Haworth’s view. “Our Mission has been through depression, wars, financial and natural disasters and lately terrorism. Yet we are about to turn 90. That’s because as an organisation we have learned to be nimble and agile enough to provide people with the right solutions for each circumstance and to do that with absolute excellence. Our strength and our longevity lie in our ability to re-evaluate and review our services and our perceptions of what our community needs.”

 

Matthew Mark, City Missioner


When the Mission first began, it was resourced mainly by goodwill and faltering amounts of money, in a city under dire economic stress. It could barely afford to pay its City Missioner. Yet within a few years it built its own headquarters and set up a hostel for unemployed men. Today it has a staff of over 70 and hundreds of volunteers. It has a complex range of services, but still exists to help people who come to it because of particular issues in their lives. “I wanted to depict how intimately connected the City Mission has always been with the people of Christchurch,” Geoffrey Haworth explains. “Not even the Mission itself was fully aware of its past. That’s because its focus is of necessity on the present and the future.”

Geoffrey found the majority of his material stored away in numerous unopened boxes in the City Mission’s basement. “What an archival treasure trove that turned out to be. I also interviewed practically all the staff members past and present back to the 1960s – some 34 people. What I learned from those interviews augmented and enhanced what I had found in the archives.”

 

 

For Matthew Mark, Guts & Grace has captured the true essence of the City Mission. “It shows just how valuable each piece of the Mission’s history is to what we are today and how the organisation has touched so many thousands of people. Our society has changed and its needs have grown wider, but with our increased and enriched awareness of the past, we will move forward into the future even better equipped.”

Guts & Grace
will be launched at a celebratory 90th birthday service in the Transitional Cathedral on Tuesday 9 July.

 


 

Lyttelton Timeball Station

A maritime marvel: Lyttelton Timeball Station


“The Building Intelligence Group is delighted to have played a role in the bringing back to life of such a rare piece of maritime history as the iconic Lyttelton Timeball Station and the working timeball itself.”

 

Lyttelton Timeball Station

 

When Project Director Stephen Threadgall from project management specialist The Building Intelligence Group says how fantastic it is to see the Timeball Tower standing tall against the skyline again, he echoes the feelings of many people, not only in Lyttelton, but in Christchurch itself. The 2 November opening of the Timeball Station certainly marked another significant milestone in the rebuild of a city which has lost so much of its heritage.

The Timeball Station is one of the few of its kind left in the world. From 1876 to 1934 a ball dropped from its mast on its stone tower, signalling the time to ships in Lyttelton Harbour. Visual time signals such as this have historically been important features of many of the world’s ports, playing an integral role in correcting ships’ chronometers and ensuring accurate navigation.

 

Lyttelton Timeball Station

 

The Victorian-era Timeball Station in Lyttelton Harbour was damaged beyond repair in the 22 February 2011 earthquake. “The building’s owner, Heritage New Zealand looked for a project manager with demonstrable experience in the heritage sector to secure a main contractor for the Timeball Station’s rebuild and to manage the programme and the construction phase,” Threadgall says.

“We at The Building Intelligence Group are known for this type of project. Over the past year we have worked with all the companies and professionals involved in the rebuild to complete the Timeball’s reconstruction on time and on budget.”  Heritage New Zealand explains that the rebuild philosophy was to retain as much of the original fabric of the building as practicable. “We wanted to ensure that when locals saw the building each day it was familiar. The return of the Timeball Station and Timeball also fits well with the regeneration of Lyttelton that is going on.”

 

Lyttelton Timeball Station

The $2 million reconstruction was on the former site using original materials salvaged from the careful deconstruction that took place following the earthquakes. As Stephen Threadgall says, “heritage projects can have their challenges. So to have the work progress so well to such a superb outcome gave our team immense satisfaction.”

A fine example of Victorian technology, the Timeball Station is one of only five in the world known to be still in working order. A rare piece of maritime history, it has now been fabulously restored and boasts spectacular views over Lyttelton Harbour.

 



 

Sheppard and Rout Architects

Exceptional spaces: Sheppard and Rout’s award nominated fit-out of ChristchurchNZ’s offices in the BNZ Centre

Our work is shaped by our surroundings and office space is vital in business. Often modern offices have a certain sameness – the blandness of a standard corporate look. Sheppard and Rout Architects set about overturning this convention when designing the fit-out for the new ChristchurchNZ offices in the BNZ Centre, a Canterbury regional NZIA awards entrant.

Sheppard and Rout Architects

“ChristchurchNZ is the city’s economic development and profile agency charged with stimulating economic activity and attracting visitors to Ōtautahi Christchurch,” Sheppard and Rout Director Jasper van der Lingen says. “It needed to be a warm and friendly space; conducive to the development of ideas, an interesting and people-oriented place and one which would also showcase products from the region. We were working to a tight budget and had to be creative.”
The resulting 1200sqm space is both efficient and stylish with its mix of open plan work areas and break out/meeting rooms. “Flexibility was key, so there are meeting rooms for all different purposes – from the very small for privacy, up to mini conference size. Because visitors come to these rooms we made sure they were sited for the best views of the city and the Port Hills.”

Sheppard and Rout ArchitectsThe design also makes use of natural and sustainable materials; timber joinery around the meeting rooms for warmth and carpet tiles made from recycled fish nets echo the natural palette of browns, creams and charcoals, creating a calming mood and effect.

Sheppard and Rout ArchitectsOne feature which pushes the boundaries of what can be done with office space is the lack of suspended ceiling. “We simply got rid of it, exposed all the services and painted everything black. It gives a great sense of increased height.”

Bayshore Builders

Turning architectural heads: Bayshore Builders has been partnering with some of the best architects in the business to deliver visually stunning results

“Queenstown is a wonderful place to be involved in the construction industry,” says Ben Collins, owner of Bayshore Builders which he set up in 2001. “There is so much variety of work, from residential builds to commercial construction and internal fitouts, as well as civil projects.”

 Bayshore Builders

Indeed, Bayshore Builders is skilled in all these aspects of construction, but Ben says the company’s deep passion is architecturally-designed homes. “We pride ourselves on working closely with architects from all over the country who have clients wanting to build in Queenstown. Of the last 11 houses we built here, three were for local residents, but the remainder were holiday homes for people from out of town – even as far away as Sydney.”
What excites Ben and his team of experienced tradies is the quality and the detailed craftsmanship required to build high-end houses. “Clients building this calibre of home have high expectations. It’s our challenge to deliver the best of workmanship and finish and we are not satisfied with anything less. It’s also very important for us to have excellent relationships with the architect and client throughout the build time, which can be anything from 12-18 months because of the size and complexity of the homes.”
Ben says that it takes a special breed of builder to take on these projects. “Not everyone wants to do this kind of work. It can be hard after all because of the need for perfection and total dedication, but I learned about building big houses while on OE in Canada and that ignited an enthusiasm which has never faded.”
Contact Ben on 021 345 256.

Dream It

Creating places with punch: meet the imaginationologists at Dream It who are designing clever new spaces in our city

As our new city starts to develop and people slowly make their way back into the central city, it will be interesting to see where the winners and the losers of the social scene will be. A bar that just pours beer will simply not make it any more. There need to be other reasons to go to that bar and stay there.

For graphic design and theming company Dream It Ltd, listening to its hospitality clients, consulting fully on ideas and actually delivering the product are the keys to both its success and to the success of the bars it designs and builds.
“I view myself as an imaginologist – but my team and I at Dream It also make what I imagine,” owner Dean Johnstone says.
“We build what we design. We don’t hand it over to someone else to implement and risk compromising the original concept.”
Dean’s imagination is seemingly limitless and not always conventional. “I once designed an in-home movie theatre in the form of a submarine wreckage ‘submerged’ in three-dimensional faux rocks with dramatic effects that can be pre-programmed and controlled.”
It’s this calibre of ability that has made Dean sought after in New Zealand, Australia and even the United States. Experienced Christchurch hospitality owner Max Bremner made sure he secured Dean and his team for the fit-outs of his three bars in The Terrace complex.

“Each bar has its own unique personality. That’s what we do. We took architectural designer John Ayers’ floor plans and added the character and identity. Fat Eddies is a ‘blues’ bar reflecting America in the 1930s and 40s; Kong is an art-deco styled cocktail bar reminiscent of a 1930s movie set where you wouldn’t be surprised to see Humphrey Bogart; Original Sin on the other hand takes those two words and plays on them with ecclesiastical architecture – a serpent, an apple and an Adam and Eve themed mural painted on carved concrete to resemble an old cracked oil painting.

Dream It
These bars were the first on the new ‘strip’ and have set a high standard. If you are wondering how they are doing, all you have to do is go there any night of the week and see places full of people having a great time.

Cook Brothers Construction

An architectural masterpiece: Cook Brothers Construction completes yet another big project in the CBD

With the completion of the first new building on the south side of Cashel Mall right in the inner city, another piece of the Christchurch CBD reestablishment jigsaw has been slotted into place.

Cook Brothers Construction

Cook Brothers Construction is proud to have been the main contractor to carry out the work on such a significant development. The project was just the type of large undertaking that this construction company thrives on with its logistical challenges and strong architectural vision.
The four-storey building comprises 2,000 square metres of commercial and retail space, topped off by a loft style apartment and balcony. A hanging garden in the front of the building is a stand out feature of the project, bringing greenery to the modern façade.
“The building certainly makes a dynamic feature on the Cashel Mall streetscape with its stunning seventeen metre glazed frontage to the mall,” Cook Brothers Construction Project Manager Tony Morley says.
“It’s something of an architectural masterpiece of mixed materials from basalt panels and frameless glass shop fronts to a large living wall of plants giving colour and vibrancy to the modern industrial design. It certainly was an interesting, enjoyable and rewarding build to work on and it was finished on time and to programme.”

Cook Brothers Construction

The developer Denis Sunderland had a property on the site prior to the earthquakes and had a vision to rebuild there as soon as possible. However, with the requirement for master-planned proposals for the retail precinct it took four years for work to commence. “During the construction process we worked closely with Cequent Projects, the mall operators and the Christchurch City Council to minimise disruption to the surrounding businesses while still keeping on track with the agreed programme on a tight site with limited access,” Tony says.
“All credit is due to the build team on site whose extra efforts achieved this great result.”