Tag Archives: Construction

Christchurch Cathedral : Marcus Brandt and the People’s Steeple Project

christchurch-cathedral-steeple-by-country-farm-garden-photos-cfgphoto-com-render1-1

While Bishop Victoria and the Anglican church property trust (CPT) continue to sit on their hands perhaps awaiting devine intervention, who knew, it turns out that a group of stalwart people in New Zealand – with an incredible level of international assistance – are busy planning a very special Cathedral project.

From: Mark Belton
Sent: Sunday, February 26, 2017 11:11 PM
To: [Elizabeth Kerr + RCC Mailing List]
Subject: Introducing The People’s Steeple

Dear Cathedral Restoration supporters

Below is a link to a video clip of the People’s Steeple proposal being demonstrated by its creator Marcus Brandt. Marcus has been in CHCH this last week promoting the People’s Steeple Project.

The People’s Steeple is a mind blowing proposal…audacious, visionary, inspiring. Lifting telescoping timber sections of the spire 60 metres into the sky…powered by about 500 trained people working 16 capstan winches placed around Cathedral Square, watched by up to 50,000 people in the Square.

The US based Timber Framers Guild (TFG), a professional organisation of engineers and timber framers has offered to be the lead contractor to build, assemble, and erect the People’s Steeple. The lead NZ engineers would be renowned CHCH timber engineer – Prof Andy Buchanan whose report on the project is attached.

Skilled TFG members from the US and around the world would gift their time, working in the Square preparing and assembling the timbers, and then helping lead the steeple’s erection. Up to 300 TFG members along with locals could be involved working in the Square over a period of about 6 months.

The TFG have successfully undertaken 75 community building projects over the last 25 years in the US and around the world. They are super keen to offer their services to CHCH. The TFG emphasise their projects are about ‘building communities’.

Marcus says would take only 2-3 hrs to lift and secure the telescoping sections. Flooring and bells would be assembled the same day and in the evening the bells would ring out…proclaiming to the world – ‘Christchurch is back’….and a Hangi feast would be opened…for a crowd of 50,000! International media would broadcast the event around the world…the whole enterprise being about engaging our community in the most positive way…and it would ignite fund raising for the restoration of the cathedral. It is envisaged the construction of the People’s Steeple would lead restoration of the cathedral and the Square.

It is noted huge pro bono contributions from the Guild’s members are being offered, and Blakely Pacific NZ Ltd, a US based forestry company has offered to provide the timbers at no cost from giant 125-year-old Port Orford Cedar from its Pioneer Forest in South Canterbury.

The Restore Christchurch Cathedral Group is strongly supportive of the People’s Steeple.

We hope this inspiring project will help engage and enthuse Christchurch people with recovery of the cathedral, and help get the cathedral restoration programme underway.

Warm regards

Mark Belton
Co-Chair, Restore Christchurch Cathedral

Mark Belton
Managing Director
Permanent Forests NZ Limited
PO Box 34, Lyttelton 8841, New Zealand

See attached reports by Marcus Brandt, Andy Buchanan, and the TFG.
TFG People’s Steeple Project approach notes-10-2-16
Steeple 16-8-12
M Belton report on Timber Framers Guild conf and People’s Steeple 23-9-16
Engineering the People’s Steeple v9

The People’s Steeple | Whare Films Published on Feb 23, 2017

christchurch-cathedral-tonyhphotography-co-nz-bw-render1-1

The People’s Steeple
Rebuilding the Bell Tower at Christchurch Cathedral

Marcus Brandt: An Introduction

For the last thirty years or so, I’ve been restoring historic stone and timber buildings, mostly in Southeastern Pennsylvania. I’m a working master carpenter and stone mason. Most of the historic buildings I am called to work on are 150 to 300 years old. Solid and well crafted, these old buildings tend to age well, but neglect and damage can take a toll. Much of my effort is spent in repairing and strengthening the timber frames of barns, bridges, houses, gristmills and churches. I’ve had several commissions to build new structures in the old style. I have organized and led many barn raisings, in which hundreds of volunteers gather to raise a barn’s frame in a day. A good crew will have the sides and roof on too.
Straightening, plumbing and repairing damaged stone walls is often called for. It is not uncommon to straighten a wall 10 meters high that is out of plumb by 400 or 500 mm. Having studied and worked with several Scots masons, I’m a strong believer in lime based mortars and good masonry practice. The interface between stone and timber is of particular interest to me.
Since 1989, I’ve been a professional member of the Timber Framers Guild (TFG) and a member of the Traditional Timberframe Research and Advisory Group (TTRAG). That part of the Guild focuses on understanding the past practice of the craft with a view that the past might help inform future practice. I have advised many historical and preservation societies and sat on many review boards.
As a result of my participation in Guild efforts and projects, I was invited to go to both Scotland and China to investigate “lost” technologies for the Public Broadcast Service series NOVA. We built working siege weapons in Scotland and in China we built a bridge design that hadn’t been built since the Mongol invasion.
I teach Traditional building skills at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA. I’m particularly interested in ways that the pre-industrial past practice can inform building in the greener, sustainable post-industrial world of the future.
I serve as a sailor, boson and ship’s carpenter aboard the tall ship Gazela (www.Gazela.org). That experience has taught me much about rigging and raising heavy loads in confined spaces. It’s taught me about erecting tall, secure, flexible, stable structures that get tossed about and shaken mercilessly. A sea captain in her own right, my wife serves as First Mate aboard Gazela. She out-ranks me, and helps keep me humble.
Since 22 February, I have been working as much as possible to develop a method to rebuild the Bell tower at Christchurch. With the help of friends and students, and the forbearance of my wife, I developed a plan that is beautiful, solid, strong, flexible, earthquake resistant, buildable, durable, and familiar. But more than anything, I want to use the rebuilding of the steeple as a vehicle for rebuilding and strengthening the community. And, once built, serve as an outward witness to the inward love we have for each other as fellow humans.
I look forward to doing this project with the able help of my best friends in the world…many of whom I haven’t yet met.

█ More information about the People’s Steeple Project and participants at http://thepeoplessteeple.org/

christchurch-cathedral-detail-mygola-com-tweaked

Related Posts and Comments:
23.12.15 Christ Church Cathedral: practical news from govt mediator…
14.7.12 Rival newspaper on historic heritage #cathedral
2.3.12 Christ Church, Cathedral Square

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

christchurch-cathedral-detail-with-chalice-sisson-photography-photoshelter-com

christchurch-cathedral-mudbirdceramics-blogspot-co-nz

christchurch-cathedral-5-aug-2003-by-cindy-staticflickr-com-tweaked

*Images: Christchurch Cathedral – (from top) colour render by whatifdunedin [photo source: Country Farm Garden Photos at cfgphoto.com]; black white render by whatifdunedin [photo source: Tony H Photography at tonyhphotography.co.nz]; colour photo of steeple detail [mygola.com]; cathedral with chalice by Sisson Photography [via photoshelter.com]; black white photo by Mudbird Ceramics [mudbirdceramics.blogspot.co.nz]; colour photo by Cindy taken on 5 Aug 2003 [via staticflickr.com]

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Filed under #eqnz, Architecture, Business, Construction, Democracy, Design, Economics, Education, Events, Finance, Fun, Geography, Heritage, Heritage NZ, Innovation, Inspiration, Leading edge, Name, New Zealand, People, Project management, Property, Public interest, Resource management, Site, Structural engineering, Technology, Tourism, Town planning, Urban design

Dunedin Hospital Redevelopment

ODT Online public notice:

sdhb-public-forum-25-2-17-screenshot-odt-online-2

[SDHB media release]

Public forum chance to learn more about Dunedin Hospital facilities

Friday, 17 February 2017

The public is being given the opportunity to learn more about how Dunedin’s new hospital facilities might be configured at an event being held at the end of this month.

A public forum will be held on the evening of Tuesday 28 February to update interested members of the Dunedin community on the redevelopment of Dunedin Hospital.

“The public forum is an opportunity for people to get a better understanding of how we are deciding what facilities we need and where to deliver the best health outcomes for the Southern district. It will provide a great opportunity for people to understand the kinds of issues the team has to find answers for before the architects can complete their work, and the time frames involved in the design and building process,” Chair of the Southern Partnership Group Andrew Blair says.

The forum will include a presentation, followed by a question and answer session.

Southern DHB Commissioner Kathy Grant says the forum will give the community an opportunity to learn how the project is about more than just replacing buildings.

“We want to take this opportunity for members of the public to come along and get a better understanding of this exciting project and the opportunity it presents for developing facilities that can support a modern healthcare system capable of addressing the needs of the next 40-50 years.”

Further information on the project is available at: http://www.health.govt.nz/our-work/hospital-redevelopment-projects/dunedin-hospital-redevelopment-project

Public forum details
Date: Tuesday 28 February
Time: 6-7pm
Location: Hutton Theatre, Otago Museum, 419 Gt King Street, Dunedin

Media contact:
SPG Chair Andrew Blair
andrew @blairconsulting.co.nz

SDHB Link

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

30 Comments

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DCC LGOIMA Response : Wall Street Mall and Town Hall Complex

Email correspondence.

From: DCC Governance Support
Sent: Friday, 20 January 2017 8:48 a.m.
To: Elizabeth Kerr
Subject: Official information response 280070 Council Buildings WOF

Dear Ms Kerr,

Official information request for information about COUNCIL BUILDINGS WOF

I refer to your official information request dated 28-November-2016 for the following information. Our response to each question is in red font [italics at this website -Eds]:

1. Does the council-owned Wall Street Mall (211 George St, Dunedin) have a current building warrant of fitness, and if not why not?

The Wall Street Mall at 211 George Street does not have a building warrant of fitness. The current status of the Wall Street Mall building warrant of fitness is that a Letter in Lieu was issued for the Specified Systems 15.3, 15.4, 15.5 because a full 12 months’ worth of daily inspections had not been completed. We can confirm that since July, 2015, these daily checks have been in place and this will not be an issue for subsequent warrants of fitness.

Please note that where a Letter in Lieu is issued this means the Independent Qualified Person (IQP) confirms that the systems in the building are working as they should and are compliant.

2. Since the construction of Wall Street Mall was completed in what years has it had a current building warrant of fitness issued, and if not why not?

Mar 2012 – Outstanding form 12A for Specified System 6 (Riser Mains).
Mar 2013 – Letter in lieu issued for Specified System 6 (Riser Mains).
Nov 2013 – Building Warrant of Fitness Received.
Sep 2015 – Letter in lieu issued for 2014/15 & 2015/16 compliance year for Specified System 15/3.
Regarding the reasons for this, please refer to the comments of the Manager, City Property below.

3. Does the council-owned Dunedin Town Hall complex, including Glenroy Theatre, Metro Cinema, and Municipal Chambers, have a current building warrant of fitness(s), and if not why not?
Since the major Dunedin Town Hall Redevelopment Project was completed (including Glenroy Theatre, Metro Cinema, and Municipal Chambers) in what years has it had a current building warrant of fitness(s) issued, and if not why not?.

There is no building warrant of fitness in place for these premises. Instead the Dunedin Town Hall complex, including the Municipal Chambers, Dunedin Centre and the Metro Theatre, have a Certificate of Public Use in place. This means the buildings are safe to use.

These buildings do not have a current Building Warrant of Fitness as, at time of writing, no current Code of Compliance has been issued following the completion of the redevelopment work as there were some building elements requiring attention relating to fire engineering. These elements have been completed and the documentation submitted to DCC Building Compliance for Final Inspection and issue of the Code Compliance. Once the Code Compliance Certificate has been issued there will be nothing to prevent the issue of a warrant of fitness at the next inspection.

If you wish to discuss this information with us, please feel free to contact Property Manager Kevin Taylor on 03 477 4000. Mr Taylor has prepared the following report for the chief executive. This is provided for your information:

The DCC Property department has previously engaged an outside contractor to administer and manage the BWOF compliance on DCC properties, in particular the Wall St Mall. In early 2015, the Building Compliance aspect was sold to Logic Project Management Consultants and a new company called Logic FM was formed and took over the majority DCC BWOF administration.

Our experience as we undertake building audits is that previous advice may have been too lax or liberal in assessing the building’s compliance with particular codes, specifically around fire protection and fire cells. We have also found that the inspections that were contracted to have been undertaken were not fulfilled, leaving gaps in the compliance processes. Thus the BWOF could not be issued by deadline or due dates.

Subsequently, it has been our experience that Logic FM has been interpreting code compliance components beyond that required by the law and schedules to the Acts governing the specified systems. Thus we have experienced a number of “notice to fix” instructions issued which are in error.

To satisfy ourselves that the BWOF is being managed and administered as it should be, DCC Property has engaged independent experts, especially structural and fire engineers, to review the building’s specified systems and as-built safety components. These independent audits have been completed and the required reports and Letters in Lieu issued to enable the DCC Building Authority to issue the BWOF.

The BWOF owners inspections have been brought in-house and are undertaken by the property team’s asset management staff. IQP inspections continue with the specific trades as required.

Yours sincerely

Governance Support Officer
Dunedin City Council Continue reading

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ODT feature : Streets of gold #Dunedin

In case you missed the ODT four-part series on Dunedin’s residential heritage in late December….. here it is, via Dave Cannan’s The Wash (Facebook).




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█ The four parts, abridged for quick reference and linked here below, had an excellent (research) information follow-up by Kim Dungey.

Some very approximate dates have been added care of Quality Value (QV), these are based on (limited) property records held by councils; as well as year dates for historical architects, where known.

Streets of Gold, a Summer Times series celebrating Dunedin’s rich architectural heritage. In collaboration with Heritage New Zealand researchers Heather Bauchop and Susan Irvine, with additional research by David Murray, archivist, Hocken Collections; and Alison Breese, archivist, Dunedin City Council.

### ODT Online Tue, 27 Dec 2016
Streets of gold: High St
High Street has an association with the medical profession dating back to the 1880s, when the Mornington cable car started running and some impressive new houses were built along its route.

CAVENDISH CHAMBERS, 211 High St.
The company behind the venture, Medical Buildings Ltd, was incorporated on March 1, 1926, and the shareholders all took professional rooms in the new property. The building was completed in 1927. Architect: Eric Miller (1896-1948).

236 HIGH ST
This prominent residence (QV: c.1900?) with a turret and projecting windows was designed in 1888 for Scottish-born Dr Frank Ogston. Ogston gained his medical degree in Aberdeen and emigrated to Dunedin in 1886 to take up a position as a lecturer in medical jurisprudence and hygiene at the University of Otago. Architect: Henry Hardy (1830-1908), and builder-developer.

238 HIGH ST
An Arts and Crafts-style design, the house (QV: c.1909?) is finished in roughcast with brick exposed on the ground floor sills. It was built for Dr D.E. Williams and his family as a private residence and doctor’s surgery and was home to the Williams family until the 1960s. Architect: Basil Hooper (1876-1960).

296 HIGH ST
Built in 1904, the Chalet Hospital (a private facility) was described as being “finished in coloured and tuck-pointed brickwork … the whole of the relief and ornament is carried out in bold cornices over the windows”. Architect: John Louis Salmond (1868-1950).

Read more + Photos

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### ODT Online Tue, 27 Dec 2016
Streets of gold: York Pl
York Place features two large homes once owned by members of the Speight family.

LARBERT VILLA – 371 York Pl
It is unclear exactly when the villa was built. Coppersmith Alexander Burt, of A and T Burt, married Janet Crawford in 1866 (they had a family of six sons and three daughters) and the couple were living in York Pl by July 1868 when Janet gave birth to a son at the house.

FORMER SPEIGHT RESIDENCE – 362 York Pl
Built for Jessie and Charles Speight after their marriage in 1898, the residence appears in the Dunedin City Council rates records in the 1899-1900 year. Architect: J.L. Salmond.

HAEATA – 273 York Pl
The residence of Charles and Jessie Speight from the time it was built in 1915, it remained in the Speight family until 1960. Bearing a strong resemblance to the Theomin family’s Olveston (built 1907, designed by Sir Ernest George). Architect: John Brown (1875-1923), a neighbour.

MRS TURNBULL’S GROCERY STORE – 324 York Pl
Known more than a century ago as Mrs Turnbull’s Grocery Store, this unusual wedge-shaped building began life as a home, stables and shop built for John and Janet Turnbull in 1875. In January 1875 tenders were invited for a two-storey dwelling and shop to be constructed of wood. Architect and Surveyor: E.J. Sanders [aka Saunders].

Read more + Photos

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### ODT Online Wed, 28 Dec 2016
Streets of gold: Highgate
Highgate has a fascinating and storied collection of prominent dwellings.

RENFREW HOUSE – 111 Highgate
Thought to have originated as a single-storey bluestone house with a central front door and double hung windows on each side. A second storey was later added. The exterior walls were built of double stone – more than 70cm thick – and the interior walls of double brick. With its wrought iron lacework, it has been described as one of the “finest examples of classic Victorian architecture in Dunedin”. Home of businessman Andrew McFarlane (1842-1904) and his wife Jane Wilson (1847-1920). By the 1890s, the family referred to their home as “Renfrew House”. Architect: credited to Nathaniel Wales (1832-1903), a neighbour.
 
KAWARAU – 204 Highgate
Designed in 1900 for dredging tycoon Alexander McGeorge, this grand residence reflects the fortunes made in Otago’s gold dredging boom of the late 1890s and early 20th century. Trained at Dunedin firm Cossens and Black, McGeorge (1868-1953) held a variety of significant engineering posts. The two-storeyed house is built of brick, has a slate roof, ornate decorative detailing, and features Tudor influences in the half timbering and veranda details. Architect: J.L. Salmond.

FORMER HUXTABLE RESIDENCE – 233 Highgate
This 1907 brick and tile residence designed for Anna and Alexander Huxtable, is a beautifully detailed example of an Edwardian villa, one with historic and architectural significance. Anna Huxtable was granted the land in 1907; a survey on May 15, 1907, indicates the foundations for the new dwelling were already in place at that date. (QV: c.1910?). Alexander Murray Huxtable described himself as both a commercial agent and patent medicine manufacturer. Architect: Edward Walden (1870-1944).

MELROSE – 384 Highgate
Likely designed for lawyer Arthur Nation (1852-1927) around 1876. In October that year, tenders were called for the construction of a “brick cottage” in the suburb of Melrose (a private subdivision in what is now known as Roslyn). However, Nation appears to have built more than a cottage: when his property was offered for sale in 1879 it was described as “a substantially-built and well-finished brick house”, its original features including hand-painted ceilings, timber joinery and stained glass. Architect: credited to John McGregor (1838-1911), and harbour engineer.

Read more + Photos

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### ODT Online Thu, 29 Dec 2016
Streets of gold: Royal Tce
Royal Terrace has a fascinating and storied collection of prominent dwellings.

DAISY BANK – 12 Royal Tce
Associated with the prominent Hudson family. An Italianate, two-storeyed symmetrical house with a large basement, “Daisy Bank” was built of concrete and wood, circa 1897. Architect: J.A. Burnside (1856-1920).

LINDEN – 22 Royal Tce
Built in the 1870s, a two-storied, two-bay Victorian residence of more than 15 rooms, with an exterior comprising plastered triple brick with quoins, foundations of Leith Valley andesite and a slate roof. Associated with the prominent Isaacs and Hudson families. Architect: Mason and Wales (likely Nathaniel Wales).

CLAVERTON – 30 Royal Tce
Associated with prominent local politician and businessman Richard H. Leary and one of New Zealand’s most prominent artistic families, the Hodgkins. Claverton was most likely built in 1877 by local politician and businessman Richard H. Leary (1840-95). Architect: likely Maxwell Bury (1825-1912).

ALYTH – 34 Royal Tce
Built in the 1870s by prominent businessman, community leader and one-time Dunedin mayor Keith Ramsay (1844-1906). Named Alyth after Ramsay’s birth place, the house was completed, at the latest, by March 1875. Architect: Robert Arthur Lawson (1833-1902).

Read more + Photos

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It doesn’t have to be a mansion located on the high streets….

crabapple-cottage-otago-peninsula-thecuriouskiwi-co-nzCrabapple Cottage, Otago Peninsula [thecuriouskiwi.co.nz]

Lastly, a THOROUGHLY USEFUL guide for those unfamiliar with historic heritage archives, technical sources and search methods.

### ODT Online Fri, 30 Dec 2016
What is your house hiding?
By Kim Dungey
Enjoyed this week’s Streets of Gold series, in which we have profiled various Dunedin houses of historic significance? Fancy playing detective and tracing the history of your home? … In recent years, Heritage New Zealand has run “how to research your home” workshops in Dunedin, Invercargill, Oamaru and Central Otago. The popular seminars have drawn together the sources it uses every day to tell the story of historic places. Archivists say some people want to restore their homes to their original states, are curious about former owners or simply want to know the age of their houses for insurance purposes. Others require archaeological assessments of pre-1901 properties or have reported seeing ghosts in their homes and wanted to work out who they might be. Interested homeowners have a wealth of resources at their fingertips….
Read more

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Filed under Architecture, Business, Construction, DCC, Design, Dunedin, Education, Geography, Heritage, Heritage NZ, Housing, Inspiration, Media, Museums, New Zealand, Property, Public interest, Site, Tourism, What stadium

OPINIONS : Otago Southland regional tourism

– Southland regional strategy pumps for another 10,000 residents
– Central Otago looking at healthy linkages – Chinese gold mining trail
– Queenstown Lakes means ‘business’, flourishing! [infrastructure demands]
– Quelle surprise, Dunedin City Council criticised on visitor strategy (what tourism plan ?)….

Broadcast from RNZ’s Dunedin studio
### radionz.co.nz 5 Jan 2017 at 5:12 pm
Outspoken: The Future of the Deep South Link
In this Outspoken, a panel chaired by RNZ’s Otago/Southland reporter, Ian Telfer, looks at the deep south of the country – what is the future for the country’s most southern region and how successful is the push to get more people to shift there?
Audio | Download: Ogg MP3 (27′22″)

● Virginia Nicholls, CEO, Otago Southland Employers Association
● Norcombe Barker, Director of Larnach Castle, tourism leader and board member of Dunedin Host
● Tim Cadogan, Mayor of Central Otago (speaking by phone)

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Just a tiny amount of what we know, from the Interior, in no geographical order whatsoever…. click on photo for source or go to Comments for credits.

queenstown-airport-day-aerial-photo-queenstown-airportss-earnslaw-engine-room-realjourneys-co-nzss-earnslaw-engine-room-real-journeys-shuttlerock-cdn-comcromwell-uniquelynz-comthe-nevis-bungy-aj-hackett-bungy-new-zealand-bungy-co-nzgrays-mining-earnscleugh-infomine-comabandoned-farm-homestead-becks-by-shellie-evans-flyingkiwigirl-at-flickr-comvulcan-hotel-aatravel-co-nzblue-lake-st-bathans-by-mclennan-outsideonline-comhayes-engineering-works-homestead-dbijapkm3o6fj-cloudfront-nethayes-engineering-shed-interior-otagocentralrail-trail-co-nzhayes-engineering-at-night-oturehua-by-simon-east-heritage-org-nzgibbston-central-otago-valli-vineyard-winetoursnz-comqueenstown-queenstownnz-co-nzqueenstown-the-mall-powderhounds-comskippers-canyon-adventurestoday-orgqueenstown-canyoning-canyoning-co-nzqueenstown-white-water-rafting-somekindofwanderlust-comclyde-dam-nzgeo-comdrybread-cemetery-omakau-otagocentralrailtrail-co-nzhyde-central-otago-talltalestravelblog-files-wordpress-compoolburn-viaduct-otago-central-rail-trail-by-m-hammel-ibike-dkqueenstown-par-3-in-the-sky-helicopter-golf-twistedsifter-files-wordpress-comthe-hills-clubhouse1-thehills-co-nzthe-hills-clubhouse-architect-pattersons-comhydro-attack-trover-queenstown-trover-comss-earnslaw-airnz-comair-new-zealand-queenstown-legacypartners-co-nz

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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Filed under Business, Central Otago, DCC, Dunedin, Economics, Education, Finance, Geography, Heritage, Hotel, Infrastructure, Inspiration, Media, Museums, Name, New Zealand, People, Politics, Project management, Property, Public interest, Queenstown Lakes, Resource management, Tourism, Town planning, Transportation, What stadium

When Life as we know it erupts into Scale, Manufacturing and Transit

Productivity is a measure of how efficiently production inputs are being used within the economy to produce output. Growth in productivity is a key determinant in improving a nation’s long-term material standard of living. —Statistics NZ ….[yawn]

Since March 2006, Statistics NZ has produced a yearly release of official measures of annual productivity for the measured sector. These measures are vital to better understanding improvements in New Zealand’s living standards, economic performance, and international competitiveness over the long term. Productivity is often defined as a ratio between economic output and the inputs, such as labour and capital, which go into producing that output.

Productivity Statistics – information releases ….[ZzzZzzzz…………..]

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Viddsee Published on May 18, 2016
Changing Batteries – A Robot “Son” Couldn’t Replace The Emptiness In Her Heart // Viddsee.com
‘Changing Batteries’ is a final year animation production made in Multimedia University, Cyberjaya, Malaysia. The story tells of an old lady who lives alone and receives a robot one day. Based on the theme ‘Change’, our story tells about their relationship development with one another through time.

Viddsee Published on Feb 23, 2016
Alarm – Relatable Animation For The Mornings // Viddsee.com
The story is about a salaryman living in a single apartment. But he has a problem getting up early in the morning. He would rather die than wake up early. He decides to set many alarm clocks everywhere in his apartment so he can get to work on time. The next morning, after struggling with his alarm clocks, he barely finishes preparing for work.

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WIRED UK Published on Jul 5, 2016
Shenzhen: The Silicon Valley of Hardware (Full Documentary) | Future Cities | WIRED
Future Cities, a full-length documentary strand from WIRED Video, takes us inside the bustling Chinese city of Shenzhen. We examine the unique manufacturing ecosystem that has emerged, gaining access to the world’s leading hardware-prototyping culture whilst challenging misconceptions from the west. The film looks at how the evolution of “Shanzhai” – or copycat manufacturing – has transformed traditional models of business, distribution and innovation, and asks what the rest of the world can learn from this so-called “Silicon Valley of hardware”. Directed by: Jim Demuth

Future Cities is part of a new flagship documentary strand from WIRED Video that explores the technologies, trends and ideas that are changing our world.

BBC aired the documentary in November, with the following descriptor:

Best Documentary 2016 Shenzhen: The Silicon Valley of Hardware gives us an insider’s perspective on a system of creative collaboration that ultimately informs all of our lives.

The centre of the technology world may not lie in California’s Silicon Valley, but in the bustling marketplace of Huaqiangbei, a subdistrict of Shenzhen in China. This is where curious consumers and industry insiders gather to feast their eyes and wallets on the latest software, hardware, gadgetry, and assorted electronic goods. At the very start the film sets the scene to this fascinating technology mecca. A city populated by 20 million people, Shenzhen is the setting where advancement is most likely to originate at speeds that can’t be replicated in the States. The city’s vibrant and inventive tech work force takes over when the innovations of Silicon Valley become stagnant. The revolution may have started in the States, but its evolution is occurring in China. Working in collaboration, Shenzhen labourers craft unique upgrades and modifications to everything from laptops to cell phones. Their efforts then immigrate and influence the adoption of new products in other regions of the world. The infrastructure by which this is made possible is known as the ‘Maker movement’. In developer conferences and Maker exhibition fairs, tech geeks are encouraged to share their ideas freely with colleagues in the hopes that more open collaborations will form grander innovations. The film highlights how these attitudes stand in sharp contrast to the Western world where communications are secretive, monopolies are the norm and proprietorship is sacred. However, there are challenges faced by Shenzhen in maintaining their edge in the industry. While widely acknowledged as pioneers, Shenzhen’s prominence has faltered as the remainder of China has proven successful in their attempts to catch up. Adding to the frustrations, the government has interceded and moved manufacturing bases outside of the city. Meanwhile, figures from the world of investment financing have moved into the equation, and threatened to stifle creativity by imposing a more closed and impenetrable mode of operations.

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### dailymail.co.uk 30 Oct 2013
Ever wondered how everything you buy from China gets here? Welcome to the port of Shanghai – the size of 470 football pitches
By Daily Mail Reporter
Whether it’s the car you drove to work in, the computer at your desk or your children’s toys strewn across their bedroom floor, there’s a very good chance they have come from here. This is the world’s busiest trading port which handles a staggering 32million containers a year carrying 736million tonnes of goods to far-flung places around the globe. Stretching as far as the eye can see, rows upon rows of containers lie stacked up at the Port of Shanghai waiting to be shipped abroad and bringing in trillions of pounds to the Chinese economy in the process. It’s this fearsome capacity that has helped China become the world’s largest trading nation when it leapfrogged the United States last year.
The port has an area of 3.94 square kilometres – the equivalent of 470 football pitches. China’s breakneck growth rate in recent years has been driven by exports and manufacturing as well as government spending on infrastructure. In the last eight years alone, capacity at the Port of Shanghai has ballooned from 14million TEUs (a unit which is roughly the volume of a 20ft-long container) in 2004 to more than 32million last year. The rapid expansion was largely thanks to the construction of the Yangshan Deepwater Port, which opened in 2005 and can handle the world’s largest container vessels. That port alone can now shift around 12million containers a year.
Shanghai’s location at the mouth of the Yangtze River made it a key area of development for coastal trade during the Qing dynasty from 1644 to 1912. In 1842, Shanghai became a treaty port, which opened it up to foreign trade, and by the early 20th Century it became the largest in the Far East. Trade became stifled after 1949, however, when the economic policies of the People’s Republic crippled infrastructure and development. But after economic reforms in 1991, the port was able to expand exponentially.
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David Carrier Published on Jan 13, 2017
World’s Biggest and Busiest Port Ever Made – Full Documentary
The Yangshan Deepwater Port is connected to the mainland by the Donghai Bridge, the world’s longest sea bridge.

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

*Images: (from top) Shanghai Map – topchinatravel.com, Donghai Bridge – topchinatravel.com, Yangshan Deepwater Port – meretmarine.com, embed.ly, reddit-com

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Getaways —Dezeen 2016

A brief selection of short and long stay architectural showpieces.

OPA finds backer for cliffside residence sunken into Lebanese mountain
Jessica Mairs | 5 May 2016 ● Dezeen
Open Platform for Architecture (OPA) is moving forward with plans to build a subterranean residence that will slice into a mountain near Beirut and feature a glass swimming pool for a roof. OPA originally released plans for Casa Brutale in July 2015, with no site, client or budget to build it. But the viral success of the renderings has now brought forward a backer with a plot of land on Faqra mountain near Beirut and a budget of $2.5 million (£1.7 million).

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The project is expected to break ground this summer and its owner will be Alex Demirdjian, the chief executive of Lebanese real estate agent Demco Properties. The buried dwelling will be bracketed by three board-marked concrete slabs, while a fourth glazed wall will allow views of the valley to take centre stage. A glass-bottomed pool will allow light to shine into the earth-encased living spaces.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/05/05/casa-brutale-opa-sunken-cliffside-residence-lebanese-mountain-swimming-pool/

Renderings: Terpsichori Latsi (LOOM Design)

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Tiny camping pods by Andrea Zittel serve as a creative refuge in the California desert
Jenna McKnight | 19 August 2016 ● Dezeen
Artists and writers wanting to play out a “desert fantasy” can rent a tiny sleeping pod at a remote campsite in southern California, which looks like a scene from a sci-fi film. Called the Wagon Station Encampment, the experimental project was conceived by US artist Andrea Zittel, who is known for her explorations into self-sufficient and sustainable living systems. The site consists of 10 sleeping pods, called wagon stations, as well as a communal outdoor kitchen, open-air showers and composting toilets. “It’s sort of a cross between a retreat and a residency and a normal campground,” said Zittel. The encampment – described as having a sci-fi aesthetic – is located on a 35-acre (14-hectare) site near Joshua Tree National Park, which is dotted with unusual rock formations rising up from a vast expanse of desert.

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The metal-and-wood shelters are meant to evoke the classic family station wagons often found in suburbia, along with the covered, horse-drawn wagons that were common in old Wild West. While the pods do not have wheels, they can be easily collapsed, moved and reassembled. Guests enter their pod by unlocking and lifting up the front panel, which can be propped up and left open. The panel has a transparent strip that enables occupants to view the surrounding landscape and sky while lying on their bed. Inside, the enclosure contains a mattress, clothing hooks and a small door for ventilation. Artists can bring their own decor, such as rugs and paintings, to personalise the pod. The campsite is part of a larger property known as A-Z West, which was established in 2000. It contains Zittel’s primary residence, a studio and shop facility and a collection of shipping containers converted into apartments. Other camp shelters include the recently unveiled Autonomous Tent, which is a sculptural enclosure with a wooden porch, and portable micro cabins designed by Harvard students for stressed-out city dwellers.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/08/19/wagon-station-encampment-andrea-zittel-tiny-camping-pods-creative-refuge-california-desert/

Photography: Lance Brewer

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Eight concrete boxes form a “moveable” vacation home on Martha’s Vineyard
James Brillon | 20 August 2016 ● Dezeen
A cluster of eight interconnected concrete volumes make up this Martha’s Vineyard residence, which is designed to be moved in the event of site erosion. The single-family East House was created by Canadian architect Peter Rose in the town of Chilmark. Serious concerns about the site’s ability to support the 4,000 square foot (372 sq m) residence led the architects to devise a system that allegedly allows the house to be moved if necessary.

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The home’s living spaces were designed as eight individual cast-in-place concrete boxes. They are connected via interstitial corridors, which were built using lightweight timber construction. According to the architects, this makes them structurally independent from one another, which in turn allows them to be moved more easily. “The solution was to cast the floors in concrete, making each box a single structural unit that can be individually lifted and moved to a location far from the bluff in case of erosion.”
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/08/20/eight-concrete-boxes-form-a-moveable-vacation-home-on-marthas-vineyard/

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Photography: Chuck Choi

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Luxury campsite in Antarctica offers tiny domed pods for sleeping and dining
Jenna McKnight | 31 August 2016 ● Dezeen
This remote “glamping” site in Antarctica features a series of igloo-like enclosures fitted with upscale decor like fur-covered chairs and bamboo headboards. White Desert – billed as the “only luxury camp in the interior of Antarctica” – consists of heated, spherical pods made of fibreglass. Six are designated for sleeping, with each designed to accommodate two guests. Additional pods house a kitchen, a dining room, a lounge and a library. The domed shelters rest atop wooden platforms and are secured to the ground with metal cables.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/08/31/white-desert-luxury-campsite-antarctica-tiny-domed-pods-extreme-glamping/

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Photography courtesy of White Desert

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BIG stacks shipping containers to create floating student housing in Copenhagen harbour
Jessica Mairs | 22 September 2016 ● Dezeen
Shipping containers are stacked on a floating platform to create these buoyant student halls of residence designed by Bjarke Ingels’ firm (BIG) for Copenhagen harbour. The project named Urban Rigger aims to provide low-cost housing for students in the centre of the Copenhagen, docked in the harbour.

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BIG’s scheme comprises nine shipping containers stacked and arranged on a floating base, to create 15 studio residences over two levels. The blocks are angled with their ends overlapping to frame a shared garden in the centre of the mobile platform – also intended to protect the housing from the threat of rising sea levels. The flat roofs of the three containers forming the upper floor each have a different function. One provides a terrace, another hosts solar panels and the final roof is covered in grass. Urban Rigger is the latest addition to a string of proposals considering shipping containers as a model for affordable housing. Copenhagen’s harbour area is currently undergoing significant redevelopment.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/09/22/big-bjarke-ingels-shipping-containers-floating-student-housing-urban-rigger-copenhagen/

Photography: Laurent de Carniere

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Baca Architects moors modular floating home on Chichester Canal
Eleanor Gibson | 23 October 2016 ● Dezeen
Baca Architects – the studio behind the UK’s first amphibious house – has completed a boxy floating home on Chichester Canal in southern England. The London-based architects developed the floating house as a prototype with British company Floating Homes. The replicable design named Chichester won an ideas competition seeking solutions to London’s housing crisis earlier this year.

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Baca Architects referenced the design of canal boats when drawing up plans for the house, but increased the scale and included plenty of windows to create a more spacious and luxurious home on the water. The architects played with the traditional rectangular shape of house boats to create a split-level design. A white staircase leads from the lounge up to a terrace carved into the flat roof of the house and surrounded by glazed balustrades. Simple finishes like white-painted walls and pale floorboards keep the space light and open.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/10/23/chichester-model-canal-baca-architects-wooden-floating-home-uk/

Photography courtesy of Floating Homes Ltd

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Precarious Alpine cabin by OFIS offers shelter to Slovenian climbers
Jessica Mairs | 10 November 2016 ● Dezeen
This tiny aluminium-clad cabin by Slovenian studio OFIS Arhitekti cantilevers over the edge of a mountain on the Slovenian-Italian border. OFIS Arhitekti worked with local structural engineers CBD to develop the Kanin Winter Cabin, which is designed to resist extreme weather conditions on its exposed site on Mount Kanin. “This particular site was chosen because of its 360-degree views over Slovenia and Italy, and spectacular views to Triglav, Soca Valley and Adriatic sea,” said the studio.

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This tiny 9.7-square-metre cabin has a narrow floor plan containing three shelf-like floors, and has dimensions of just 2.4 by 4.9 metres. It is made from a combination of cross-laminated timber, glass and aluminium panels. “The interior design dictates modesty, subordinate to the function, providing accommodation for up to nine mountaineers.”
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/11/10/cantilever-alpine-shelter-kanin-winter-cabin-ofis-architects-climbers-slovenia/

Photography: Janez Martincic

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Flat-packed cabin concept allows tiny houses to be assembled like IKEA furniture
James Brillon | 20 November 2016 ● Dezeen
A Vancouver-based startup’s conceptual design for flat-packed recreational cabins would allow users to build for themselves, making the wilderness more readily accessible. The Backcountry Hut Company is an offshoot of interdisciplinary design firm Leckie Studio. Its goal is to facilitate the process of building cabins for a variety of uses. The huts are provided in pieces that can be efficiently packed flat and assembled on site. Rather than being built by professional craftspeople, the cabins can be put together by a small group working together. The simple geometrical cabins encompass two floors. The ground level contains public areas that vary according to individual preferences. Sleeping quarters are located above, and are accessed using a ladder. The metal-clad huts are part of a larger trend towards building small, modular dwellings.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/11/20/backcountry-hut-company-leckie-studio-flat-packed-cabin-concept-assembled-like-ikea-furniture/

Images courtesy of Backcountry Hut Company

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Antarctic research centre to be towed inland to escape dangerous ice crack
Amy Frearson | 13 December 2016 ● Dezeen
The world’s first mobile research centre on the floating Brunt Ice Shelf in Antarctica is going to be moved to a new location for the first time, due to fears it could be trapped on an iceberg.

antarctic-research-centre-to-be-towed-inland_dezeen_hero_01Photo: British Antarctic Survey

antarctic-research-centre-to-be-towed-inland_dezeen_sqaPhoto: Hugh Broughton Architects

Designed by Hugh Broughton Architects for the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), the Halley VI Antarctic Research Station has only been operational since 2013, but now needs to be towed 23 kilometres to a new location. This is because a chasm that had previously been dormant for approximately 35 years started to grow just after the station was installed, putting it at risk of separating from the ice shelf. The £25.8 million research station is built to withstand extreme winter weather. Made up of seven interlinking blue modules, the structure is raised on hydraulically elevated feet to stay above the many metres of expected snowfall.
These ski-like feet also make it possible to tow each of the modules over a prepared ice track. But the team did not expect to have to move the building less than five years after the facility opened.
https://www.dezeen.com/2016/12/13/halley-vi-antarctic-research-station-towed-inland-escape-dangerous-crack-brunt-ice-shelf/

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr

This post is offered in the public interest.

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