New Zealand High Commission
The New Zealand High Commission in Canberra was located in an original 1950s Ministry of Works building which needed an extensive renovation and rebuild. Respecting and maintaining the original architecture and increasing the existing floor area was a large part of the brief.
Studio Design + Architecture totally gutted the building, removing all partitions and services, and extended the internal floor plates to include the existing unused exterior balconies.
For security and traffic flow reasons the building entry needed to be repositioned and the floor plates enlarged. New fences and a guardhouse were designed with a relocated entry into the site off a more secure street.
Respecting and maintaining the original architecture
Meanwhile, creating the interior involved a complete new current fitout with public spaces and staff areas. The Entry Foyer space was up a flight of original stairs with large marble panels cladding the walls; our design used the clarity and severity of the original as a starting point and added natural timber for warmth and flooring textured carpet for detail. New glazing to the upper floor made a huge difference to the natural light in the building.
The exterior landscaping also formed a large part of the design and connecting this outdoor space to the indoor space was very important functionally.
The project was carried out between 2015 and 2017.
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