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Prefab plus - Motu Kaikoura lodge


From the Resene News 3/19

The interior embraces the warmth of timber, lined with plywood, simply finished with Resene Aquaclear satin...

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Motu Kaikoura is a protected scenic reserve northwest of Great Barrier Island, managed by the Motu Kaikoura Community Trust. The lodge area is located on the southern side and accommodates research workers, education initiatives, volunteers and public visitors to the unique island. In 2013 the communal building was destroyed by arson. SGA was approached due to their experience in prefabrication and the demanding remote location that needed a fresh approach to building.

The facility, which houses a kitchen, dining and indoor/outdoor living is conceived of flexible spaces with a strong connection to the environment through framed apertures and plentiful natural light. The directional breezeway draws you in towards the hypnotic view with decks either side to be utilised depending on weather conditions.

In response to the existing buildings, services and various directions of approach, the new saw tooth form reaches up to grab the north sun and imitate the natural bush form. Materials are robust, the pre-finished exterior blends into the surrounding bush, contrasted by the warmth of the timber interior.

Exterior view

Due to a major shortfall in funding SGA conceived a creative solution to get the project off the ground. A partnership was formed with Architecture+Women NZ to deliver the building contract as an educational programme in which 16 architects and graduates would gain invaluable hands on experience. Due to this unique collaboration the project was also supported by many industry partners who generously donated or discounted building supplies.

The construction system was devised with transport limitations of land, sea and sky in mind, as well as buildability for the apprentice team and the Trust’s environmental policy. The panelised building components were constructed in the SGA Workshop in Kingsland and flat-packed and transported by hi-ab then ferry then heli-lifted on to the foundations from a barge in the passage below. The method of construction and story of assembly are proudly expressed in the detailing and finishing.

The location and purpose of this building has a strong connection to the natural world; conservation activities on a scenic reserve. The colours of this building respect and embrace this positioning of the building. COLORSTEEL® and Resene Lumbersider in Resene Lichen (olive brown) wraps the exterior, punctuated by sizable timber framed Cedar sliding doors, and Resene Ironsand (brown grey).

The interior embraces the warmth of timber, lined with plywood, simply finished with Resene Aquaclear satin. Pine flooring is finished with Resene Qristal ClearFloor polyurethane. Built in seating and cabinetry extends this simple aesthetic language, creating a cohesive and welcoming space for the many diverse users of this building.

Architectural specifier: SGA – Strachan Group Architects
Building contractor: SGA x A+W NZ Building Workshop, Crate Innovation, JR Hosking Carpenters & Co.
Client: Motu Kaikoura Trust
Painting contractor: SGA x A+W NZ Building Workshop
Photographer: Ross Keane

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