Possible interior of a WikiHouseNZ project called the BackYarder
Photo: Tigran Haruyunyan, WikiHouse (via Stuff)
The new prototype, called the Backyarder, is the “nucleus of a much larger house”. –Danny Squires, WikiHouseNZ
### Stuff.co.nz Last updated 08:20, April 6 2015
Business WikiHouse project ‘a social enterprise’
A communal house-building network that started in the dark days after the Christchurch earthquake will be a reality this year. WikiHouse is an open hardware project, where experts design houses, or parts of them, and share their creations online for any house builder who wants to use them.
WikiHouseNZ co-founders and directors Danny Squires and Martin Luff will build a 25-30 square metre prototype house by the end of the year, they said at a launch event. The house will be fully enclosed, watertight, insulated, plumbed and wired for electricity and the internet. It would cost no more than a conventional house of the same size, Luff said.
The pair would seek consent for the building. It would initially be manufactured and assembled in WikiHouseNZ’s lab in Addington, but could be disassembled in hours and moved anywhere. WikiHouses are built from plywood shaped by a computer-controlled cutting machine. Components were fastened with plywood pegs rather than nails or screws.
The houses are more than “hobbyist prefab systems”, said Alastair Parvin, the London-based architect credited with launching the WikiHouse idea in 2011. The New Zealanders came aboard almost immediately and were in effect co-founders, Parvin told the launch via Skype. The New Zealand arm was a social enterprise. It generated profits but used them for a social good. Read more
█ WikiHouse/NZ developed by Space Craft Systems
Space Craft Systems is a social enterprise forged in the crucible of post earthquake Christchurch to develop the WikiHouse system in NZ and revolutionise the way we create our built environments. http://spacecraft.co.nz/wikihouse-news/
### ODT Online Mon, 7 Jul 2014 Retrofit double-glazing system catches on
By Sally Rae
A Dunedin-designed double-glazing system, which started as a concept drawn on a paper pie packet, is now being sold in Australia. Thermawood, a patented retrofit double-glazing system for existing timber joinery, was the brainchild of Graeme Clarke, whose background was both as a joiner and a glazier. The system was developed around drainage. Read more
From the website: ‘An advanced double glazing system for existing timber joinery. A unique, patented double glazing system which has been approved and tested to building standard NZS4211:2008 the industry standard for weather-tightness for windows and doors. Experienced, skilled tradesmen ensure quality workmanship. Thermawood is proudly locally owned and operated from Dunedin, servicing the wider Otago region. All Thermawood materials are 100% NZ made and the Grandadapter is manufactured locally in Mosgiel. Thermawood Otago are also experienced in and offer – retrofitting aluminium windows and doors, double glazing, re-glazing, frameless glass showers, balustrades, painted glass splash-backs, mirrors, architectural glazing systems.’
Note: What if? Dunedin can’t endorse the product; we can confirm it’s a locally available building option.
WikiHouse is an Open Source construction system that makes it possible for anyone to design, download, adapt, share and ‘print’ CNC-milled* high-performance, low-cost houses that they can assemble by hand with minimal formal skill or training, anywhere.
WikiHouse is a non-profit project, developing hardware and software which is open and shared in the commons, owned by everyone.
The purpose of the WikiHouse construction set is that the end structure is ready to be made weathertight using cladding, insulation, damp-proof membranes and windows. WikiHouse is still an experiment in its early stages.
*CNC means Computer Numerical Control. A computer converts the design produced by Computer Aided Design software (CAD), into numbers. The numbers can be considered to be the coordinates of a graph and they control the movement of the cutter. In this way the computer controls the cutting and shaping of the material.
All the information shared on WikiHouse.cc is offered as an open invitation to the public, collaborators and co-developers who are interested in putting Open Source solutions to these problems in the public domain. If you are working on one of these, or would like to know (or do) more, please contact WikiHouse.
TED 23 May 2013
Alastair Parvin: Architecture for the people by the people
Architect Alastair Parvin presents a simple but provocative idea: what if, instead of architects creating buildings for those who can afford to commission them, regular citizens could design and build their own houses? The concept is at the heart of Wikihouse.
TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world’s leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design — plus science, business, global issues, the arts and much more. http://www.youtube.com/user/TEDtalksDirector
Dunedin, March 2010. Benchill (Wikimedia Commons).
### ODT Online Fri, 3 Jan 2014 Streetlight ideas from US trip
By Debbie Porteous
Seeing the bright lights of some major American cities has given the man responsible for a street lighting revolution set for Dunedin some solid ideas. Dunedin city council roading maintenance engineer Peter Standring went to the United States last year to look at different technologies and visit cities that have started updating their street lighting. Read more
Puzzled. The news story says Peter Standring went to USA.
But lower down, it says (our emphasis):
“Los Angeles was in many ways the world leader in the procurement, installation and development of LED technology, and the group was “very lucky” to have had one and a-half hours of Mr Ebrahimian’s time, Mr Standring said.”
What group? A DCC group? (or a USA group he tagged along with?) What have we paid for? A 2013 trip for one person to Los Angeles, Durham, Racine, Chicago, Phoenix and San Francisco —or a trip for a group of staff and their wives?
[via Upstart Incubator (@UpstartDunedin) who tweeted at 9:29 AM on Tue, Dec 31, 2013]
### mckinsey.com September 2013 How to make a city great
By 2030, 60 percent of the world’s population will live in cities. That could mean great things for economic growth — if the cities handle their expansion wisely. Here’s how.
What makes a great city? It is a pressing question because by 2030, 5 billion people — 60 percent of the world’s population — will live in cities, compared with 3.6 billion today, turbocharging the world’s economic growth. Leaders in developing nations must cope with urbanisation on an unprecedented scale, while those in developed ones wrestle with aging infrastructures and stretched budgets. All are fighting to secure or maintain the competitiveness of their cities and the livelihoods of the people who live in them. And all are aware of the environmental legacy they will leave if they fail to find more sustainable, resource-efficient ways of managing these cities.
Explore six diverse initiatives aimed at making cities great places to live and work.
To understand the core processes and benchmarks that can transform cities into superior places to live and work, McKinsey developed and analysed a comprehensive database of urban economic, social, and environmental performance indicators. The research included interviewing 30 mayors and other leaders in city governments on four continents and synthesizing the findings from more than 80 case studies that sought to understand what city leaders did to improve processes and services from urban planning to financial management and social housing.
The result is How to make a city great (PDF, 2.1MB), a new report arguing that leaders who make important strides in improving their cities do three things really well:
█ They achieve smart growth. Smart growth identifies and nurtures the very best opportunities for growth, plans ways to cope with its demands, integrates environmental thinking, and ensures that all citizens enjoy a city’s prosperity. Good city leaders also think about regional growth because as a metropolis expands, they will need the cooperation of surrounding municipalities and regional service providers. Integrating the environment into economic decision making is vital to smart growth: cities must invest in infrastructure that reduces emissions, waste production, and water use, as well as in building high-density communities.
█ They do more with less. Great cities secure all revenues due, explore investment partnerships, embrace technology, make organisational changes that eliminate overlapping roles, and manage expenses. Successful city leaders have also learned that, if designed and executed well, private–public partnerships can be an essential element of smart growth, delivering lower-cost, higher-quality infrastructure and services.
█ They win support for change. Change is not easy, and its momentum can even attract opposition. Successful city leaders build a high-performing team of civil servants, create a working environment where all employees are accountable for their actions, and take every opportunity to forge a stakeholder consensus with the local population and business community. They take steps to recruit and retain top talent, emphasise collaboration, and train civil servants in the use of technology.
Mayors are only too aware that their tenure will be limited. But if longer-term plans are articulated — and gain popular support because of short-term successes — leaders can start a virtuous cycle that sustains and encourages a great urban environment. Link to source
*Image: commons.wikimedia.org – Central city view of Dunedin, New Zealand, at night from Signal Hill lookout. The dark horizontal band above the centre of the photo is the Town Belt. Some landmarks including First Church of Otago and the Dunedin Railway Station are visible near the centre. Photo by Benchill, 9 March 2010.
Calvin Oaten notes:
As you can see I copied [the below] to most. So far, the only response has been Cr Lee Vandervis. He agrees. [Chief executive] Sue Bidrose hasn’t come back with so much as a “rubbish” or “interesting”.
The rest, well I am wondering if this new crop are going to be any better than the last. You would think I would get shot out of the water by at least Cr Richard Thomson, but nothing. All I want is to open up the debate.
Looks like it is just too hard for them to think about the issue. Get elected, get the remuneration sorted and then back to sleep. “El Duce”, of course, wishes I was on another planet.
—— Forwarded Message From: Calvin Oaten Date: 1 December 2013 11:33:36 AM NZDT To: Dave Cull Cc: Hilary Calvert, Jinty McTavish, Lee Vandervis, John Bezett, Kate Wilson, Chris Staynes, Mike Lord, Aaron Hawkins, Neville Peat, Doug Hall, Andrew Noone, David Benson-Pope, Sue Bidrose, Richard Thomson Subject: Fwd: Transport Strategy
I have been reading the article Sharing the Road by Shane Gilchrist in Saturday’s ODT, and was particularly interested in your comments. You point out the reason why council began this process in the first place: “It’s about safety on Dunedin’s one-way system.” “Council, in collaboration with the NZTA, is both resolved and obligated to make our one-way street system safer. That’s what we asked NZTA to do after the last death. Let’s be clear: It is the NZTA’s responsibility to make state highways safer.” A very laudable position, but is the seeming solution necessarily the right one?
To me it is a philosophical question: If it is purely about safety and preservation of life then surely cyclists on the one-way would be wrong. History has proven that. If it is about ‘freedom of choice’ then it would be a matter for responsible persons or parents to weigh up the situation then opt for a choice, it being on their own heads. Either way, nothing would need to be done to alter the status quo. I would have no problem with that.
“It’s like the next version of NHNZ. It’s like NHNZ version 3.1 in a lot of ways, version one being when we were part of TVNZ, version two being when [former managing director] Michael Stedman took over and gave us a new lease of life, and this is another step.” –Kyle Murdoch, NHNZ
### ODT Online Wed, 27 Nov 2013 Children’s TV for NHNZ
By Vaughan Elder
Dunedin’s NHNZ is preparing to take on the likes of Disney with the launch of its own international children’s television channel. NHNZ managing director Kyle Murdoch said, in preparation for the launch of the channel next February, 54 staff were hard at work in Dunedin producing content for it. About 40 were new staff who had joined the office since the middle of this year. Read more
● Michael Stedman, former managing director, retired at the beginning of this year.
Text received. Sunday, 17 November 2013 11:06 a.m.
The comment also appears at ODT Online (link supplied). -Eds
Some lateral thinking required?
Submitted by Calvin Oaten on Sat, 16/11/2013 – 3:03pm.
In all this discussion on the merits or otherwise of catering specifically for cyclists to have safe means of traversing central Dunedin, it seems that it is the safety which is being lost sight of. Surely, in a survey of recent cyclist fatalities in Dunedin, they have by far and away happened on the SH1 one ways. So why on earth do the authorities insist on staying on those routes? Is there no alternatives?
Let’s look at this. The main trip of concern is from Normanby to the Oval. Start at Normanby on North Rd (not an arterial way) travel to the Gardens, then along Gt King St to the Gardens side gate and onto the cycle/footpath, already existing, to Duke St, down to Castle or Leith Sts. Along to Dundas St and down to Forth St. Along Forth St to St Andrew St. Along Anzac Ave to the Railway Station. Along the station forecourt then onto railway land and proceed behind the Settlers museum and Chinese Garden, across Rattray St and along behind the Box Retail area to Andersons Bay Rd.
Problems? Negotiations would be needed to obtain an easement through the railway land and a lane constructed to suit. Advantages: No fatalities on SH1, No parking to be forfeited. No alteration to the landscaping. Face it, all those mature trees along both route are very efficient ‘carbon sinks’ and one would expect cyclists to appreciate the value of those. From this route it would not take too much planning to tie it in with the N W Harbour to Port Chalmers trail, again obviating needing to go onto SH1 or 88. It also connects nicely with the University complex. A cycle park could be established in the Station vicinity, with a short walk to the CBD.
Win win I would think. Disadvantages: Frankly I can’t think of any, but I am sure there will be.
Normanby to Gardens on existing cycleway, check.
Through Botanic Gardens on new cyclepath – DCC initiative.
Exit at Leith St, connect to new cyclepath through University – Otago Uni initiative.
Exit at Albany St, proceed to Anzac Ave on existing cycle lane.
Connect through Railway Station to existing cycle lane.
Arrive adjacent to Oval in mint condition.
NZTA/DCC Dunedin Separated Cycle Lane Proposal
█ Public consultation on two preferred cycle lane options ends at 5pm on Friday, 6 December.
To access an online survey form or for more information on the separated cycle lane options, visit http://www.nzta.govt.nz/dunedincyclesafe, or email your comments to dunedinshcyclelanes @ nzta.govt.nz. Alternatively, ring 03 477 4000 for an information pack, or post your comments to:
Cycle Lane Feedback, C/o NZ Transport Agency, PO Box 5245, Moray Place, Dunedin 9058
People are welcome to attend the remaining drop-in sessions:
● Held. [12 noon – 2pm, Thursday 14 November, Wall Street Mall]
● 3pm – 6pm, Tuesday 19 November, Otago Settlers Museum
● 12 noon – 2pm, Wednesday 20 November, The Link (University of Otago)