The Eye of the Fish

Maximus
May 24, 2010

Sporting Arena

There’s something arising in the Eastern block, and it’s not the russians. Tall, concrete columns, marching in a slow symbolic circle, firmly upright, tasteful grey – it could only be the new Eastern Sporting Arena. Despite the misgivings of the Fish, we’ve grown resigned to the fact that it is here in Rongotai, and it appears to be going great guns. Even from this very early photo, you can start to get an idea of what a big part this is going to play in the architecture of the Eastern suburbs – well, perhaps almost the only piece of architecture here….

So far, we’re holding our breath and biting our tongue (Fish are good at doing that). Mind you, there is an awful lot of digging that needs to be done here, and the earth movers are having a field day. This building must be so close to the water table (and probably below it in the basements) that if we get a high tide it’ll pop up and sail away. Well, hopefully not. More progress shots as it happens….

Of course, there is another piece of interesting architecture going up nearby, although curiously no one has mentioned it yet. Too early?

Sportshenge
24 - 05 - 10

Yes, it is looking rather handsome at the moment. For all my misgivings about teh location, it could be a good building in its own right.

“Of course, there is another piece of interesting architecture going up nearby, although curiously no one has mentioned it yet. Too early?”

I presume you mean the pumpkin patch, whoops, rock garden at the airport? Looking forward to seeing that finished. The cladding that’s there already looks more like dark, weathered rocks than anything vaguely squashlike. StudPac should fire whoever did their bright orange renders – unless of course it was all a ruse under the assumption that there’s no such thing as bad publicity.

james
24 - 05 - 10

Or do you mean the Capital Cinema being rebuilt in Miramar?

No one except this facebook group, http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=112899862074204

Or this article: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/local/the-wellingtonian/3429974/New-life-for-old-cinema

Or this press release: http://www.newswire.co.nz/2009/09/miramar-theatre/

Piltdown Man
25 - 05 - 10

“no such thing as bad publicity” ? Surely most people would agree that was a PR disaster at the time…. Mind you, unless there is a professional spinner involved, with the Dom Post reporting on architecture, every new building is a disaster. Unless Ann Packer is writing on how good the quilts are.

Roman Ruin
26 - 05 - 10

Those concrete pillars look great just as they are, but not sure about all the traffic congestion that’s bound to be caused on sports days.

It’s all looking a lot more hopeful than that dire bit of banal shopping mall that Archaus designed next door. I see that nearly all of it has gone bust / lost tenants already. That was predictable…

Domino Theory
27 - 05 - 10

That empty (Archaus) space would do well to host one of those kiddyminder places with a basic cafe – the temptation on a Saturday to dump the sporty ones and their toddler siblings off in one fell swoop would be strong, methinks.
Or do I just know too many mommys who drink?

Roman Ruin
27 - 05 - 10

A crèche ? I was thinking more of a bulldozer and starting again. I bet the developer is thinking the same by now too…. To build crap in the first place is inexcusable. To build crap that you can’t lease is just totally pointless.

richardmaclean
27 - 05 - 10

Greetings Maximus – re your comment about the water table and the prospect of the whole building floating off to Somes Island or Petone in a strong southerly, our project engineers tell us the the car park is about 500-700 mm above the water table – so it should hold firm. More immediately worrying is the prospect of the site being invaded by naked dancing Druids at the solstice in a month or so. Suffice to say we will have sufficient ‘resources’ in place to repel the bearded men and virgins.
Cheers
Richard MacLean – WCC Communications

Maximus
28 - 05 - 10

Repel the virgins? Sounds like you might be taking Council policy too seriously!

Nice to have you back Mr MacLean.

Maximus
28 - 05 - 10

Roman Ruin – a trifle on the harsh side? I know we said way back that this shopping mall was Banalitecture, but I think it was more that it was on a north facing site next to the sea, and it presented a blank wall. Yes, yes, it was next to a motorway too, but with a bit of forethought it could have been so much better.

On the good side, now that everyone in the complex has gone bust or moved out, maybe it could be redesigned as des res for the aged? Maybe a home for the deaf?

basil
28 - 05 - 10

Maximus! Unacceptable! Deaf people are not often blind as well…

And even the aged deserve good architecture. It’s a good location for sitting and looking out and planes, weather and sea, but someone would have to make some holes in that big blank wall. Any volunteers?

Maximus
28 - 05 - 10

Oh dear, sorry Basil. You’re all such soft Sensitive types. I merely meant that the motorway noise might have put off those with good hearing. And yes, it does / would need some extensive remodeling – but the vacant office space upstairs already enjoys some extensive north facing sea views out over the top of the ‘express-way’ in front. Surely must be someone doing some numbers on that.

Rex Nicholls, you still out there listening?