Link received from Hype O’Thermia
Sat, 4 Apr 2015 at 10:20 a.m.
█ Message: Local shop owners blame lack of free parking and rising costs for “demise” of Hamilton’s CBD.
The Central Business District of Hamilton is looking a little gloomy, with for lease signs up in many shop windows.
### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 05:00, April 4 2015 Hamilton central-city retail space sits empty
By Rachel Thomas and Nancy El-Gamel
Twenty per cent of ground level central Hamilton retail space is empty. Local shop owners are blaming lack of free parking and rising costs, while business leaders are pointing fingers at absentee landlords, sub-standard buildings and an inability to compete with lower rents at The Base.
The Base is New Zealand’s largest shopping Centre based in Te Rapa, 7 km North of Hamilton CBD.
To quantify what the average shopper sees [in the CBD], the Waikato Times counted all ground floor premises in the block within Hood St, Victoria St, Angelsea St and Liverpool St, finding that of 524 premises, the 104 empty ones outnumbered the 67 locally owned and operated stores in the area. […] Hamilton Mayor Julie Hardaker acknowledged the CBD needed desperate attention, and said council was taking a “holistic approach” to the problem. […] “For the city centre to be successful it must be commercially and economically successful and over the last few decades most reports have focused on physical changes, so we have started with an economic analysis and looked at the trend since 2001 in terms of the economy.” Read more + Video
Read comments to the article.
How many other places – like Dunedin – mirror Hamilton ?
Posted by Elizabeth Kerr
*Images: Waikato Times/Stuff – Hamilton CBD [screenshots from video]
Updated post Thu, 23 Jan 2014 at 5:28 p.m.
Public Memorial Service (1 February) details below.
█ Sir Ian Charles Athfield KNZM (15 July 1940 – 16 January 2015) was a New Zealand architect. He was born in Christchurch and graduated from the University of Auckland in 1963 with a Diploma of Architecture. That same year he joined Structon Group Architects, and he became a partner in 1965. In 1968 he was a principal partner in setting up Athfield Architects with Ian Dickson and Graeme John Boucher (Manson). Link to profile
Sir Ian had recently been made a knight companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to architecture. Photo: NZ Herald
### stuff.co.nz Last updated 17:51, January 16 2015
The Dominion Post Renowned architect Sir Ian Athfield dies, aged 74
By Simon Bradwell and Tom Hunt
Renowned Wellington-based architect Sir Ian Athfield has died. He was 74.
Athfield Architects associate Rachel Griffiths said Sir Ian died in Wellington Hospital early this morning surrounded by family. His death was the result of “unexpected complications” during a procedure to treat his colon cancer.
“Ath had been dealing with cancer for some time with his usual stoicism and inappropriate humour,” Griffiths said. “There is … no-one else like Ath and we are devastated by his passing.” The Athfield family had asked for time to deal with their grief, she said. No date had been set for the funeral or memorial service at this stage.
A statement released this morning by the New Zealand Institute of Architects announced his death. “It is with great sadness that we inform Members that Sir Ian Athfield, one of New Zealand’s finest architects, has passed away in Wellington,” it said. “Our deepest condolences go out to Ath’s family, friends and colleagues. There are few details to share at this stage, but we will notify members of any funeral or memorial service arrangements as soon as they arise.”
Athfield, who was knighted in the most recent New Year Honours for his work in architecture, won more than 60 awards for his work. In a professional career spanning half a century, his stamp was imprinted across Wellington, and with Roger Walker, he was probably New Zealand’s leading exponent of modernist architecture. His most well-known works included the City Library and its nikau palm columns, built as part of the Civic Square redevelopment in the 1980s, and his own sprawling Khandallah house. He also designed Jade Stadium in Christchurch, which was damaged in the February 2011 earthquake.
Walker said he was “still in shock” on getting the news of Athfield’s death. Read more
Sir Ian Athfield – Public Memorial Service
The New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA) have organised a public memorial service to celebrate the life and work of Sir Ian Athfield, to be held at 3pm, Sunday 1 February, in Civic Square, Wellington.
Details of the service are yet to be finalised, but it is envisaged that it will include eulogies from people who knew Ath well. The service will very much be a memorial to Ath the Architect, and many Members will wish to attend. https://www.nzia.co.nz/
archivesnz Published on May 5, 2013
Architect Athfield (1979)
New Zealand National Film Unit presents Architect Athfield (1979)
‘Architect Athfield’ examines the frustrations and achievements of one of New Zealand’s most lively and innovative architects. In 1975 Ian Athfield won an international competition directed towards providing housing for 140,000 squatters from the Tondo area in Manila. Ironically, Athfield had jumped to international prominence before any wide-ranging acceptance in his own country. This film examines Athfield’s practical philosophy of architecture, and culminates in his trip to the Philippines, where he hopes to make his prize-winning design a reality.
wclchannel Uploaded on Nov 30, 2011 Ian Athfield – Central Library architect
### rnz.co.nz Sunday 11 August 2013
Arts on Sunday
1:43 New Arts Icon Ian Athfield
Ian Athfield on his new honour and he talks about this weekend’s forum on how architects and designers can help out following natural disasters. AudioOggMP3 (6′59″)
### ODT Online Sat, 27 Apr 2013 ‘Look at heritage differently,’ Athfield says
By John Gibb
Leading New Zealand architect Ian Athfield yesterday praised Dunedin’s wealth of heritage buildings but urged a rethink of aspects of the city’s one-way-street system. Mr Athfield, of Wellington, was in the city yesterday to give the annual New Zealand Historic Places Trust R.A. Lawson Lecture, as part of the Dunedin Heritage Festival. Addressing about 200 people at the University of Otago’s St David lecture theatre, he said “we have to look at heritage differently”. One-way street systems, in Dunedin and elsewhere, could sometimes separate important heritage buildings from their communities, and could make it difficult for people to approach such buildings on foot because of traffic volumes. Mr Athfield […] urged people to take a more flexible and holistic approach to heritage, treasuring the wider context of historic buildings, including their landscape settings, rather than seeing them only in isolation. Read more
Photo: City Gallery Wellington
Aalto Books profiles Portrait of a House by Simon Devitt
Published by Balasoglou Books May 2013
Only 1,000 copies printed with 100 special edition copies that include one of five photographic prints. At 140 pages, a true collector’s item for those interested in New Zealand history, architecture, design and photography. Portrait of a House is a photo book by photographer Simon Devitt in collaboration with graphic designer Arch MacDonnell (Inhouse Design). This is Devitt’s first foray in the photo book genre. His book explores the Athfield House – the ‘village on the hill’ – an architectural experiment that Ian Athfield started in 1965 on the Khandallah hillside in Wellington, and which he is still altering and extending today.
The house is renowned in bohemian and academic circles for its many colourful dinner parties and occasions, and is infamous with neighbours past and present for the antics of its free-range livestock and frequent run-ins with Council. Roosters have been shot, construction shut down and architectural pilgrimages made.
This is an extraordinary story told through Devitt’s sensitive eye, blended with historic photographs, paintings and drawings from the Athfield archive. Clare Athfield’s contribution of her own recipes (dating from the 1960s until now) complements a selection of personal letters by family, friends, colleagues and clients which are insightful and often very funny – memories that make Simon’s photographs all the more potent in their beauty and silence.
The idea for the book came from Devitt’s admiration of Robin Morrison’s work and in particular Morrison’s 1978 photo book Images of a House about a William Gummer-designed house built in 1916. “A house is a pretty refined subject to make a book about,” explains Devitt. “It is not market driven, it is content driven and born out of passion. Life has happened there like in no other house, and the ‘living’ leaves its evidence, time has played out on its surface. There is a lot to be said about sitting still and how that looks. The Athfield house is a wonderful example of this. An accessible counterpoint to a largely asset based living that pervades New Zealand.”
### radionz.co.nz 3 March 2013
Radio New Zealand National
Sunday Morning with Chris Laidlaw
Listen on 101 FM or online at radionz.co.nz
10:06 Ideas: Re-imagining the Urban House
Arguments for intensifying the density of housing tend to fall into two categories: Affordability and putting a halt to urban sprawl.
Ideas talks to two architects who advocate higher density housing not just for those reasons but because they believe, if done right, it will result in more liveable houses and communities.
Robert Dalziel, the co-author of A House in the City: Home Truths in Urban Architecture, has travelled the world looking at traditional models of high density housing and come to some interesting conclusions; and Ian Athfield, one of New Zealand’s most celebrated architects, talks about the lessons he’s learnt from building his own house which now combines living quarters for 25 people with office space for another 40. AudioOgg VorbisMP3 (49′59″)
“Get rid of those traffic engineers, which is another bloody thing, y’know, they’re singularly minded, quite stupid, y’know, they don’t think of anything else other than how long it takes to move a car from one space to another – that can’t happen in our cities in future.”
“The word “urban design” is now an abused profession – just like planning was in the sixties, y’know, and I said in the sixties if we knew as much about planning as we thought we knew about apartheid, we’d be demonstrating against planning, before we demonstrated against apartheid, because it is really really important. We had zoning at the time, absolutely ridiculous…”
Athfield House, Wellington. Photo: Grant Sheehan
### stuff.co.nz Last updated 07:46 23/03/2011 Architect Athfield not softening
Source: The Press
Architect Ian Athfield is refusing to back down from his ultimatum about Christchurch’s development. Today he defended his comments, saying it was “absolutely the best time ever” to have the debate about how the city would look in the future. He was backed by former Christchurch Mayor Garry Moore who said the city now had a “clean slate” that presented opportunities like never before. NZPA Read more + Comments
### radionz.co.nz Monday, 07 March 2011 at 8:22
Morning Report with Geoff Robinson & Simon Mercep Architectural ambassador joins rebuild debate
The rebuilding of Christchurch is clearly an emotive issue. Wellington architect Ian Athfield and Christchurch planning and resource management consultant Dean Crystal join us to discuss the rebuild debate. AudioOgg VorbisMP3 (6′22″)
### theglobeandmail.com Tuesday, 10 July 2012, 1:07 PM EDT
Last updated Tues, 10 July 2012, 1:15 PM EDT
Real Estate High time for more low-rises
By Nadani Ditmars
The traditional “Vancouverist” model of a tower and podium may well be headed for a civic sea change. In the midst of controversy over proposed new towers – like the Rize Alliance development in Mount Pleasant that continues to draw significant community opposition despite being approved by council – several new “low-rise” projects are quietly making their mark on the urban landscape.
Call it the “slow-rise” revolution if you will, but the model that is gaining ground is one that evokes an earlier era and a more human scale, with uniquely contemporary design. Centred around Vancouver’s historic neighbourhoods, projects like Gastown’s Paris Annex, Chinatown’s Flats on Georgia and Mount Pleasant’s Collection 45 offer modernist architectural values that respect the surrounding built-and-social environments in a way that the city’s growing number of cookie-cutter towers do not.
Developer Robert Fung, whose six-storey Paris Annex building will be completed this summer, and has already sold out, contends that “our region needs density – it’s crucially important. But that doesn’t mean that it has to be exclusively through high-rises.” He notes that Paris, one of the densest cities in the world, achieved that density largely through the six-storey walk-up typology.
While he believes that high-rises can be designed with sensitivity to their environment, low-rises offer certain advantages, says Mr. Fung, “They increase light in an area,” he notes. “They offer a strong sense of identity and individuality, but at the same time make it easier for neighbours to get to know each other.”
Because of the low-rise’s need to be “strongly contextual to where they are,” he says, “that can often mean a higher level of design, and greater attention to detail,” noting that “our historic neighbourhoods tend to offer greater opportunities for this, as the buildings have to have a greater sense of engagement with their environment.”
He notes that some towers in the area, like the Woodwards one, tend to be “inward looking” with a lack of “street-front engagement.” Low-rises by nature have a greater engagement with the street and tend to go against the grain of the “commodity ubiquity towers” that proliferate around, say, the False Creek South area. The Paris Annex is a conjoined fraternal twin of sorts to the next-door heritage conversion (and former HQ of Paris boot-makers) Paris Block. Both buildings, designed by architect Gair Williamson, share service core infrastructure.
“You have to walk through the old 1907 building to enter the new one,” notes Mr. Williamson. “Every day, residents are literally moving through history.”
The elegant 35-foot building of glass and steel will contain 2,500 square feet of retail on the ground floor and mezzanine, with 17 market residential units on the upper floors.
The constraints of these “character sites,” as Mr. Williamson calls them, “make them unique. When you work on a 25-foot site, you have to respond with integrity and be hyper-aware of the surrounding environment.” Read more
According to columnist Nicolai Ouroussoff, the future may be bleak, but at least some architects can look back on the year with a sense of triumph. He lists projects by architects Zaha Hadid, Jean Nouvel and Toyo Ito:
“What all of these projects share, besides being splendid architecture, is an ability to infuse a drab, lifeless neighbourhood — whether it be a derelict postwar area at the far edge of Rome’s historic centre or a generic new development outside Copenhagen — with a sense of joy. Like much great architecture, they create a sense of place — of collective identity — where there was none.”
Ouroussoff suggests the greatest shift of all has been a renewed interest in infrastructure:
“Encouraged by the debates that surrounded the unveiling of President Obama’s stimulus package, American architects, curators and students have thrown themselves into the task of rethinking the networks — train lines, freeways, bridges, levees, ports and waterfronts — that bind our communities together.” Read more
The past decade has created a flood of carbon copy useless ‘new’ city centres…
### guardian.co.uk Tuesday 29 December 2009 10.13 GMT
2000 to 2009: Reviews of the decade Regeneration in the noughties
By Tom James
I moved to Sheffield in 2000. Back then, it was a pretty mad place: a post-Blade-Runner-city of soviet-style car parks, motorways through the city centre and pedestrians herded into underpasses. Knackered, empty and full of potential. Regeneration seemed to offer an opportunity to change all that, to turn the city into something amazing. My friends and I dreamed of old factories full of art and music; of our brutalist heritage restored; of derelict cooling towers turned into Tate Moderns of the north. We realised pretty quickly that this was a little ambitious. Read more
-Tom James is an urban activist and writer.
Follow the link above for more Guardian articles on Regeneration, including:
30.12.09 Public space in the noughties by Anna Minton, author of Ground Control: Fear and Happiness in the 21st Century City, published by Penguin.
This should have been the decade of public space but, instead, areas are increasing becoming privately owned and controlled.
5.8.09 Legacy of the docks
It is time to rethink the London Docklands development as simply a struggle between powerless locals and ‘yuppie’ colonisers, says former resident Michael Collins.
### localknowledge.mercatus.org Friday, January 1, 2010 Caring Communities: The Role of Nonprofits in Rebuilding the Gulf Coast
By Peter J. Boettke
The idea of “social entrepreneurship”—innovation in the philanthropic sector to fill in the gaps left by both the market sector and the state sector—has become a hot topic in the last decade. People increasingly wonder how nonprofit enterprises and social entrepreneurs can effectively mimic the successes of the market economy in increasing human welfare, choice, and dignity without either the profit-loss system of markets or the democratic and constitutional checks of the public sector.
The face-to-face forces of reputation and community membership not only coordinate highly effective small-scale projects that support those in need, but they provide a sense of community and identity to us all.
This issue of Local Knowledge seeks to pay attention to and increase our understanding of the necessity and vitality of such associations and the work of social entrepreneurs in society, both in normal times and in those that are most trying. Read more
-Peter J. Boettke is University Professor of Economics at George Mason University and Vice President of Research, Mercatus Center at George Mason University.