Following the Canterbury earthquakes in 2010 and 2011, New Zealand's Building Code underwent changes and as a result many buildings that were no longer fit for purpose were torn down. With new open space becoming available, many towns and cities were given the opportunity to reinvent their own identity and recreate their main centres to restore confidence in the community and increase economic activity.
We were asked by Grey District Council to help renew Greymouth town centre. Our recommendation was an urban design framework; a place-based, design led approach informed through a range of consultation including public surveys, public feedback meetings, the formation of a Project Working Party and a number of project workshops.
It was the consultation with the community and stakeholders that ultimately shaped the vision and design principles for the final master plan of Greymouth's town centre. Creating unique spaces through storytelling was central to this vision. The CBD will be well connected to a range of activities and amenities and will be accessible for people of all ages and abilities. It will also be multi-generational and designed sustainably for the wellbeing of people and the environment.
The Urban Design Framework was led by our landscape architects and urban designers in collaboration with our transport planners, archaeologists, architects and mechanical engineers. This Framework sets out a plan to reinvigorate connections with the Grey River and the surrounding environment, through a design that celebrates the local climate, natural environment and its rich culture and heritage.
We also provided the concept design of 14 major catalyst projects including a town square and a street renewal project. These projects have also led to a conversation around the development of the surrounding land to become a public hub with cafes, accommodation, and retail spaces.
Greymouth's new town centre will invigorate the community, bringing work and play to a hub that celebrates the beauty and culture of the town.