Auckland Art Gallery
1The Auckland Art Gallery is an iconic and much-loved part of the city’s cultural heritage. When the gallery needed to seismically strengthen and refurbish the buildings – which were built in 1888 and 1916 respectively – they trusted the challenging work to Holmes Consulting Group’s expert engineers. The final part of the work was to design new space to host an ever-growing number of exhibits, including the work of many of New Zealand’s most celebrated artists. This project required the technical expertise to cope with a challenging seismic ‘retrofit’, combined with the ability to match the character and style of the new space with the existing structure. It was a tough brief we were delighted to handle.
2The seismic strengthening work started with the rigorous assessment of the building’s structural needs, drawing on market-leading modelling technology to identify potential weaknesses. The strengthening solution focused on minimising the impact on existing heritage features, at the same time as creating a robust, resilient structure for the future. The new space includes three galleries and two new roof level sculpture terraces, and the addition of a 3-storey glass atrium structure with a tension rod façade system and tree-like canopies that define and cover the entry forecourt, atrium and gallery areas.
3Re-opened in 2011, the Auckland Art Gallery’s assured façade perfectly aligns the old with the new – creating an impressive and compelling experience for its many local, national and international visitors. The project has won awards from the World Architecture Festival (2013) in the Building of the Year category, as well as the Culture category. To add to that, the Auckland Art Gallery collected the RIBA International award for architectural excellence (NZIOB), the Property Council New Zealand Supreme Award, and additional awards in the categories of Education and Arts, Heritage and Adaptive Reuses. It has also won the NZIA Architecture Medal and category awards in Heritage and Public Architecture nationally, and the same for the local competition. A structure to be proud of.