Heke Rua Archives New Zealand

Heke Rua Archives
Heke Rua Archives

Warren and Mahoney worked closely with mana whenua representatives to develop the kaupapa driven design brief that became the underpinning conceptual driver for the facility.

Warren and Mahoney worked closely with mana whenua representatives to develop the kaupapa driven design brief that became the underpinning conceptual driver for the facility.

The Heke Rua project's overarching design approach was implemented to allow Archives New Zealand and mana whenua to offer a shared identity. This took the form through a whenua-specific narrative and visual and spatial language as a restorative tool for mana whenua visibility and relationship with this important site.

Significant investment in a co-design process with mana whenua has resulted in a mana-enhancing experience for all involved. This provides an authentic design outcome, representative of the aspirations for the physical and operational outcomes for Archives New Zealand and the preservation of the 'evidence of New Zealand'.

This project provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create a national documentary heritage campus. Warren and Mahoney provided key deliverables in the Resource Consent and planning process liaising with Wellington City Council to ensure the facility delivers not only on the functional and aspirational requirements for Archives New Zealand and the developer AMP Capital, but also achieves a design exemplar status under the district plan, ensuring the design provides a positive contribution for the local community, and the city. This process involved early workshops with council representatives, presentations, and updates throughout to ensure the council were part of the design development journey and ultimately had a greater shared understanding of the project early on.

The building has been designed to international best practice standards for archival facilities and ensures the built outcome is a highly tuned building envelope with building services working in harmony to achieve minimum long term energy use through globally benchmarked design principles.

The building structure employs base isolation for seismic resilience, disengaging the building from the ground shaking to protect the building and contents.
This means the building would be able to remain safe and operational after a major earthquake. The building will include back-up generators that can support the building for several days should the power be lost. Mechanical and electrical systems are designed with a high-level of back-up to keep collections safe when faults occur, or maintenance is required.

“This new building will provide a state-of-the-art archives repository and specialist facilities for Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga Archives New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa National Library of New Zealand and Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision,” says Internal Affairs Minister, Jan Tinetti.

“Taranaki Whānui Te Āti Awa representatives have worked in partnership to co-design this building with a te ao Māori world view, connecting the building to the celebrated kainga (home) of Pipitea, the ancestral home of hapū of Te Āti Awa.

“Archives New Zealand has never had a national purpose-built facility before. We can say with confidence that best practice standards have been applied to this specialist building.

“It’s our aspiration that staff and visitors will feel a sense of pride and place when they walk through the doors, knowing that our nation’s taonga and people are being well cared for."

Heke Rua Archives Hero Image LR
Heke Rua Archives 2
Heke Rua Archives 1