In every issue of our magazine, we devote the back page to a feature that invites architects (and regular folk) to choose their favourite buildings. Over the coming weeks we'll be posting some of these. First up, architects Chris Adams and Bianca Pohio, who divide their time between Auckland and Sydney. They like the idea of Auckland's old works depot becoming a place for art. The photograph is by Todd Eyre.

Chris: "These buildings were designed in the mid-1960s by George Kenny under Tibor Donner, Auckland’s City Architect. All the heroic core buildings in Auckland – the City Council building, the Ellen Melville Hall and the Parnell Baths – were built in this period. This one reminds us of New York’s DIA Beacon, an old factory that’s now an art gallery."
Bianca: "This is a perfect building to be a gallery. I hadn’t noticed it until I came to Deus ex Machina, the cafĂ© here. It is beautifully constructed with its steel and in-situ concrete, and amazing natural light. There’s been a sense that New Zealand is a young country so you can just bowl things and build again. These buildings should be preserved to value the wonderful architecture of the era."


You can easily visit the buildings if you wish - as Bianca mentions, Shed Five cafe (also known as Deus ex Machina) is in one of them, at 90 Wellesley Street. At the moment, the area is planned to be developed as the Rhubarb Lane residential quarter. The first stage of the Rhubarb Lane development will be built in the lower part of the depot, so the sheds behind Chris and Bianca will be demolished to make way for a park space for the area. Shed Five, however, will remain in place, although its long-term future is less certain.
 
Top