Heretaunga Intermediate School

Darryl Church DCA Architects of Transformation
  • Category Healthcare & Education
  • Floor size 840m²
  • Location Hastings, Hawkes Bay/Poverty Bay
  • Awards Supreme Winner
  • Photos Andrew Caldwell


Project Description

Heretaunga Intermediate School receives the Supreme Award for being a successful architecture project to both balance critical community needs and functions, while also producing a beacon project that stands for the fun of coming together to learn. Weighting fun and function equally is seamlessly delivered. The melding of these elements into a timeless taonga for the community is what makes this project stand out as an exemplar at this time in Aotearoa’s history.

The exercise of balance is reflected in the exterior and interior colour symbolism, embodying the busyness and tranquility of its prominent site. There is also balance in the elegance and robustness of both form and materiality. The simple extruded box volume successfully uses colour in both exterior and interior placement to highlight separate activity areas. The result is to create a distinctive and inviting playful building that entices students to discover the joys of learning within.

The landscape design and siting of the footprint respond to the placement of the former building, the adjacent busy trafficked streets, and the new creation of flexible courtyard spaces to extend the multiple educational functions. They are capped off with an extruded roof line that is both elegant and functional as an all-weather shelter for the youngsters below.

There is a pleasing equilibrium achieved in this thoughtful and mature scheme for the educational community of this place. It is both a glorious gem and a treasured taonga for learners today and tomorrow. It is deserving of the Supreme Award for all that it symbolises, embodies and represents inside and outside in experience, context and in its role as a conduit to deliver knowledge for future generations.