Star Blocks and Medium Density Housing

An introduction to Medium Density Housing The 1950s saw the rise of medium density state housing. Previously, New Zealand state homes were single dwellings on quarter acre sites. These developments, while successful at the time could only house one family per acre. Land prices and shortages in the 1950s saw a departure from these quarter acre developments.[1]…

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Tamaki Drive Design Proposal

Tamaki Drive Development In 1998 Bruce Wild proposed to develop the Tamaki Drive shoreline. His proposal encouraged pedestrian access to the shoreline, recreating a forgotten beach below Tamaki Drive.     The proposal shown in the sketch above, 1998.   Proposed Site Takaparawha Point sits between Okahu and Mission Bays. Tamaki Drive hugs Takaparawha Point. It…

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From sketch to design

The Architect’s sketch Architects use sketching to explore concepts and ideas. A single sketch can govern the overall form of a building. As was the case for one of our recent projects; a Kainga Ora (Housing New Zealand) walk up apartment in Mangere. We developed the initial concept, taking the project to the resource consent…

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McCahon House Visit

History Last year Dixon Wild visited the McCahon House. The house sits amongst native New Zealand bush in the leafy suburb of Titirangi. It provides an insight into how the artist Colin McCahon lived when he moved to Auckland from the South Island. McCahon lived in the house with his wife and children from 1953-1960. The…

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Wangaruru Site Model

Making a site model is a useful exercise for architects during the preliminary design stage. It allows us to experiment with forms on the site; and to figure out what does or does not work. We recently created a physical model for our Whangaruru project. We documented the process with photos below.   Step 1: Site…

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Building Envelope and Passive Design

The building envelope is the ‘skin’ of a building. It consists of the walls, windows, roof and floors that make up a building and separate internal spaces from external conditions.    Why is the Building Envelope important? The main purpose of a dwelling is to is to provide shelter to its occupants from external environmental…

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Resource or Building Consent?

There are two types of consents in New Zealand; resource consent and building consent. The local authority (council) grants both consent to allow building work to proceed.    Resource Consent Written approval from the local council to carry out building work that may impact the environment or other people. Altering the overall form or character…

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Whangaruru Site Visit!

ROAD TRIP! Last month the DWA team visited one of our sites in the beautiful northern town of Whangaruru. The sunny weather was too good to stay indoors, so we left the office and headed up north for the day. The Journey: Whangaruru is a town just outside of Whangarei, about 3 hours from our…

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OUR NEW BLOG!

Welcome to Dixon Wild Architects’ new blog!   Follow along to gain an insight into our architectural practice. We will showcase current and past projects, office field trips and provide information about the design process.      

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