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Northland Events Centre


From the Resene Total Colour Awards gallery — Okara Drive, Whangarei

Northland Events Centre is a community project for the northernmost region in New Zealand, completed in May 2010.

Its impetus came from the need to provide a new stadium at Okara Park in Whangarei in readiness for the Rugby World Cup in 2011. Already it has hosted the NZ Maori team and gained validation as an RWC 2011 venue.

Northland Events Centre

Emerging from the intense local interest, the brief was to provide much more than facilities for just rugby. Also included in the building is office space for sports and related community bodies, conference areas and reception spaces. It will be a major regional venue for Kapa Haka groups, trade fairs, fashion shows, farmers and craft markets. Other sports such as soccer and hockey are also envisaged for the park.

Northland Events Centre Stadium

The project emerged from the coming together of several local interest groups, and was developed jointly between the Northland Regional Council and the Whangarei District Council.

The choice of colour for the building was seen as an important strategy in symbolising the bringing about of this community initiative. The architects identified that the badge of the Northland Rugby Club, which combines the blue sky of Northland with the gold of the Kauri tree, held an ideal combination that could capture the story.

Blue stadium bleachers
Grey and blue walkway

The very tight budget decided the use of self-coloured elements needing minimal maintenance, largely without the addition of applied finishes. The primary materials include natural concrete; zincalume finish profiled steel cladding, and white PVC structural membrane fabric of the roof. Such materiality often has little colour, yet in this activity-focused building the urge to inject primal energy was strong.

Most of the building’s structure is reinforced concrete, however several key elements are constructed in steel. Using paint for the steel corrosion protection system created the opportunity to introduce vibrant colour highlights.

Blue and yellow exterior
Blue and yellow stadium exterior

The colours Resene Fun Blue and Resene Gorse encapsulate the local theme and bring in the light of sky and the energy of the sun to enliven the predominant palette of silver and grey. The blue has again been emphasised in the colour of the stadium seating.

Colours used: Resene Fun Blue, Resene Gorse.

Architectural Specifier: Copeland Associates Architects
Building Contractor: Argon Construction
Painting Contractor: Cake Commercial
Photographer: John Dymond, Copeland Associates

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Resene Total Colour Awards gallery

The Resene Total Colour Awards celebrate and encourage creative use of colour. For colour and decorating inspiration, browse through the hundreds of projects submitted...

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Resene Total Colour Awards 2010

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