Banksia logs turned into ex­quis­ite cab­i­net

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By KARINA ABADIA

Trees re­moved to make way for the Water­view Con­nec­tion project in Mt Al­bert have been trans­formed into an in­tri­cately de­signed cab­i­net.

The Well-Con­nected Al­liance of­fers wood to com­mu­nity groups and other or­gan­i­sa­tions when land is cleared for the mo­tor­way ex­ten­sion.

A few of the groups which have shown in­ter­est in­clude Star Mills Preser­va­tion Group, The Friends of Oak­ley Creek and Water­view School.

But Unitec is the first or­gan­i­sa­tion to pro­duce some­thing new with the ma­te­ri­als.

Fur­ni­ture and cab­i­net­mak­ing stu­dent John Soi spent six weeks mak­ing the cab­i­net out of banksia tim­ber re­moved from around Richard­son Rd.

Mr Soi is from Pa­pua New Guinea and the cab­i­net is in­spired by Swedish de­sign.

Fur­ni­ture and cab­i­net­mak­ing lec­turer Sid Suha Ak­soy says it also leans to­wards Vic­to­rian de­sign.

‘‘John has added his own fea­tures to it. He has brought the Vic­to­rian style into the 21 cen­tury.’’

Mr Soi pre­sented the cab­i­net to the Well-Con­nected Al­liance project man­ager John Bur­den at an event held at Unitec on Fri­day af­ter­noon.

Mr Bur­den says it’s a won­der­ful ges­ture.

‘‘When we gift or­gan­i­sa­tions and in­ter­est groups with wood that has been cleared from site, we are pleased that the felled trees have a pur­pose and new life.’’

Ini­tially the cab­i­net will be on dis­play in the Well­Con­nected Al­liance’s re­cep­tion area for staff and visi­tors to see, he says.

It’s likely the cab­i­net will be auc­tioned at a later date in or­der to ben­e­fit a char­ity or com­mu­nity group in the area.

Ex­quis­ite work­man­ship: Unitec stu­dent John Soi has made a cab­i­net from banksia logs which were felled to al­low for the Water­view Con­nec­tion mo­tor­way ex­ten­sion.

Be­fore shot: It took al­most two years for the wood to dry out be­fore it could be made into fur­ni­ture.

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