Te Whanau o Tupuranga is a bi-lingual school that caters for students from year 7 to 13. Its special character is whanau-based, Maori-centred education, utilising new teaching styles that incorporate flexible spaces and open plan learning with integrated technology. The new school was integrated into an existing school site, which housed a middle school.
The project involved the construction of an administration building, library, gymnasium and teaching block. Significant refurbishment and additions were also undertaken on the whare nui, whare kai, hall, music and art rooms. In an effort to retain the history and integrity of the original Tupuranga teaching block, the structure was incorporated into the new design.
The underlying design of the new school acknowledges Maori as Tangata Whenua. Whilst the buildings are unashamedly modern, the planning principles are concerned with creating a whanau-based atmosphere and ethos.
Traditional Maori colours of red and black were used throughout the interior and exterior of the buildings. Expression of Maori imagery was also achieved through the modulation of materials . These principles are especially evident in the landscape design.
The approach to landscape design at Te Whanau o Tupuranga School was to extend the learning environment into the landscape by providing a range of flexible, multi-use external spaces. The paving design reflects a layering of rich subject matter including references to Maori fibre arts, traditional Waka navigation by the sun and stars and connection with rivers and the sea. The school significantly contributed to the cultural themes and provided particular patterns for feature paving areas. These patterns were ‘woven’ together in such a way that a different theme becomes prominent in each key space throughout the school's landscape.
- 2009 NZIA Local Architecture Award for Public Architecture
- 2010 NZILA Gold Award (Landscape)
- 2010 NZILA Resene Award of Excellence