WellUrban

Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Playing favourites #8: Freyberg Pool


Freyberg Pool, WellingtonThere's been some debate over on the Architectural Centre blog about whether or not the Freyberg Pool belongs among Wellington's ten best buildings, but for me, there's never been any doubt. There's an elegance in the swoop of the roof that's all too rare, and it has structural and functional logic behind it as well. I've always been fond of its almost Niemeyeresque dynamism, but it wasn't until I was fortunate enough to have dinner one night at Martin Bosley's that the pool's beauty really hit me: the light flooding out of the glass walls and across the marina was breathtaking.

Imagine if the well-loathed TSB Arena had exhibited such élan! Sure, it's at least twice the size, but even a building of those dimensions should be capable of some grace. Concrete-and-glass Modernism gets a bad rap in some quarters, but the Freyberg Pool proves that back in the 1960s, at least some people saw the need for a long-span roof as an opportunity to create beauty rather than as an excuse to build a cheap shed.

3 Comments:

At 5:18 pm, April 18, 2007, Blogger Maximus said...

and here too - no doubt it is one of the most beautifully sculptural buildings in Wellington - but any dissention would only be over the age... after all, if we are looking for 10 best recent works, then at some 45 years old, its no mere teenager...

 
At 10:56 pm, April 18, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I concur on this one. Freyberg all the way. Not only does this building represent a fresh form in general, but it demonstrates an approach to the water not seen by any other building.

This to me is numero uno.

 
At 7:52 pm, May 18, 2011, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe that the building is completely out of place. it either needs to be renewed (upgraded) or sorted out in some other way. and it's useless too! Why do we need a swimming pool when we have the beach right next door? And the gym when there's plenty of running and jogging paths around? I think the pool has lost its old 'sports' spirit and no longer serves it's initial purpose. besides, it looks way too bulgy, feels like it's just been dumped there and left for the fate....

 

Post a Comment

<< Home