After nearly three years of construction, Wellington’s new convention centre Tākina has reached a pivotal point in its build. With its show-stopping façade and an entire plenary floor now complete, the purpose-built venue remains on track for its opening in June 2023.
Sitting across two levels and ideal for plenaries up to 1,600 delegates, the exhibition and plenary spaces on the first floor are both fully complete.
Inspired by Wellington’s dramatic weather patterns, topography and maritime settings, the building’s curved façade is clad in shimmering bronze glass.
It also draws from Māori mythology, particularly Te Ūpoko-o-te-Ika-a-Māui (Maui’s head of the fish). The legend refers to the forming of Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Wellington's unique harbour and waterfront topography.
The result is a unique structural form and a bold new addition to Wellington’s waterfront.
Designed by Studio Pacific Architecture for Wellington City Council, the 18,000m2 building is situated in the heart of Wellington’s compact central city. This meant it had to respond to many complex requirements, including pedestrian movement patterns, combining public and private use, solar access and closely surrounding buildings.
Sitting between Cable and Wakefield streets, the bends between existing buildings created concave and convex geometry to consider, and have resulted in an organic and dynamic design.
Project Director Stephen McDougall says “Tākina is clad in a shimmering bronze glass which changes in transparency throughout the day as it reflects the city’s variable weather. What also makes it a distinctly Wellington building is the use of earthy tones, materials and colours throughout. It is a building that is designed for Wellington that celebrates its location and context.”
Tākina, meaning ‘to invoke’, is a name that reflects both the building and the capital as a place people come together to connect and collaborate.