From the Resene News - issue 2/2017
From the Resene Total Colour Awards gallery of entries
Successful city centres are places where people go to work, to shop, to socialise and, if they are to work effectively they are also where people live. Porirua Council’s City Centre Revitalisation project aims to make the city a more attractive and inviting place to live, work and enjoy free time, and is leading this change through investment in a high quality public realm.
The newly named ‘Cobham Green’ replaces what was previously a block of carparks and provides a much stronger pedestrian link into the city centre. This design move is a catalyst for the larger revitalisation project; the first move to bring people, light and life back into the centre. The kiosk, which contains two food outlets as well as public toilet facilities, is strategically located at the intersection of the main shopping street and the Green.
The kiosk is timber clad with a floating steel and glass canopy overhead. The toilets replace a tired and notorious toilet block that was hidden away behind buildings that surround Cobham Court. The combination with food outlets may initially seem at odds but it brings life and energy to the area which fits with the overall intent of the revitalisation plans.
A key aspect of the design intent was to provide a space that the Porirua citizens could be proud of, a small and manageable change to the CBD that would become a signal of the city’s future and wider improvements to come.
The palette of colours and materials has a subtle Pasifika theme. The introduction of ‘green’ vegetation back into asphalt carpark was supplemented by natural materials and colour choices that were bold and warm. The kiosk battens are back dropped by the Resene Red Hot (primary red). Diagonal opaque stripes on the overhead glass canopy cast patterned shadows across the panels hinting at weaving patterns. A subtle shift in colour to Resene Uracryl 403 tinted to Resene Red Berry (vivid red) occurs on the solid panels between the sliding doors, and Resene Imperite in Resene Blast Grey (charcoal metallic) and Resene Black complete the kiosk colour palette.
The reds are reused in landscaping elements, together with Resene Adrenalin (fluoro orange), Resene Havoc (pure red), Resene Bullseye (cherry red), Resene Buttercup (bold yellow orange), Resene Starstruck (rich gold) and Resene Foundry (shadowy charcoal) drawing the activity and community out of the kiosk into the new seating elements and wider landscape. All paint systems were chosen because of their ease of recoating and durability. Whether the kiosk is open or closed bold colour choices give the kiosk a beacon like presence in the Court that is at once inviting and warm.
The choice of using natural timber as a key building component in this location was a very carefully calculated risk. Graffiti and vandalism is very common in our cities and particularly common around public toilets. It is also difficult to remove if applied to the timber battens that are the predominant material of the kiosk. The concept was that by making an environment that the community would be proud of they would respect it and this was the best protection against vandalism. To date that has absolutely proved to be the case. For added protection the battens are also finished in Resene Uracryl.
Porirua CBD by Isthmus Group Ltd won the Resene Total Colour Landscape Colour Maestro Award 2016.
The judges thought: “The practicality and durability of form are enhanced with colour, subtly drawing attention to the detailing.
The integration of the colour palette shows close attention to detail to ensure each use of colour complements all others, while also providing a new curation of the colours depending on the angle they are viewed from.
Cleverly placed pops of bolder colour punctuate what could have easily been a sea of grey concrete, adding a sense of fun, energy and vibrancy welcoming visitors into the CBD.”