Solid start to centre
Work is to start on the next stage of the $26 million Hundertwasser Art Centre with Wairau Maori Art Gallery in Whanga¯ rei after the last of 75 piles were laid to support the building.
The completion marks a significant milestone for the build, says Whanga¯ rei Art Museum Trust chairman Grant Faber.
The trust is behind the $26 million project, which is due to be completed late 2020. The Government has given almost $10m towards the project. An economic impact report, from Northland’s regional economic development agency Northland Inc earlier this year, estimated construction activity of the centre will generate $49m for the region.
“The piles are the feet that will anchor the building to the ground but the connection is symbolic too. Hundertwasser’s vision for the site is now physically connected to where the centre will soon stand,” Faber said.
He said 75 hollow steel tubes were sunk into the ground at depths of between 35 to 28 metres to create the piles. These were then excavated before the holes were filled with steel and concrete to form the piles.
The next stage in construction is to form and pour the concrete bond beams which link all the piles together.