The first building in the new Manukau Tertiary Centre signals the beginning of a dramatic shift planned to occur to both the location and activities of Manukau city centre. Bringing students into the city centre, train passengers into the tertiary building, and people back to Hayman Park will redefine the experience for visitors to the city centre of Auckland’s south.
The metropolitan city centre of Manukau is marooned somewhat, surrounded by the southern motorway and Great South Road to the east; the south-west motorway to the south; the southern rail line to the west; and Cavendish Drive to the north.
Manukau Institute of Technology’s (MIT) mission is to improve educational outcomes within their community.
The strategic brief for MIT’s new facility, the Manukau Tertiary Centre, envisaged the total elimination of physical and psychological barriers to accessing tertiary education.
The Manukau District Plan anticipated rail activity over Hayman Park, which enabled Kiwirail’s extension of the Southern Rail Line in 2012. This, in turn, provided MIT with the unique opportunity to incorporate a public transport interchange within the design of their educational facility.
Key recommendations of this initial Panel meeting included:
- The need for the transport interchange to be read as a public amenity, rather than just the entrance to the Manukau Tertiary Centre;
- Concerns over the negative impact of the back of the development to the adjacent street and treatment of all street edges, with a focus on the west and southern elevations along Wiri Station Road;
- Risk of the bus interchange along Davies Avenue becoming a compromised space lined with blank facades.
Investing in durable design is critical for MIT.
Commercial organisations come and go; educational institutes do not. We have to think in terms of decades, not years. So we’ve designed for flexibility to future-proof the building. The pedagogical revolution in Manukau is only just beginning – and we’re using this building as the springboard for emerging teaching practices and technologies.
The building is designed to be a cultural destination – a centre for meeting, events and arts, a platform of transportation, and a place where the possibilities of learning are discovered.
The ground floor café spaces extend out towards Hayman Park and provide more vibrancy to the city centre.