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

Thursday, May 25, 2006


The scaffolding is finally coming off the Chaffers Dock building, revealing its most distinctive feature: the southwest corner.
Southwest corner of Chaffers Dock
Okay, so it's not quite so dramatic without the gratuitous Photoshopping, but it's still a delightful example of Art Deco streamlining, and makes it clear why this is one of Edmund Anscombe's most important buildings. While it was still wrapped in scaffolding, I had a hard time convincing visitors to Wellington that this bulky, blocky mass was a significant part of our heritage.

Chaffers Dock - west elevationThe new colour scheme, while a little bit dull, brings out some of the detail and emphasises the horizontal lines of the building. I'm not so convinced that the new penthouse floor fits in with the rhythms and materials of the building (what's with that Monteiths-bar stone cladding?), but I'll reserve judgement until it's a little bit closer to completion.


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