IPWEA NZ Excellence Awards

The 12th IPWEA NZ Excellence Awards were presented at the Fulton Hogan conference dinner at the IPWEA NZ Conference in Dunedin recently. These are a few of the winning or commended entries related to civil contracting.


WINNER: Mangawhai Water Treatment Plant. Kaipara District Council and Opus International Consultants

The Mangawhai water supply system serves a permanent population of 200 which dramatically increases to 900 as visitors flock to the area over Christmas. Kaipara District Council engaged Opus International Consultants in September 2016 to design and implement a new Water Treatment Plant for the Mangawhai bore water supply that complied with Drinking Water Standards.

Halving the original project schedule so that the new facility would be operating in time for the 2016/17 Christmas holidays, led to an innovative tailored procurement method coined “design-collaborate-refine-build”. Specialist contractors with a past working history with the council or Opus were engaged to complete components of the project.

Agility in project delivery was the crux of the innovation, which, coupled with a huge commitment to collaboration between all parties, ensured the construction schedule and milestone dates were achieved. This synergy led to the project being under budget, and achieving commissioning ahead of the ambitious schedule.


WINNER: Takaro a Poi / Margaret Mahy Family Playground. CERA and Opus International Consultants

From its inception, the Margaret Mahy Family Playground was never going to be ordinary. The 1.5 hectare park, set on a site laid bare by earthquakes, occupies almost a full inner-city block, taking public recreational infrastructure to a new level. It is the largest project in New Zealand created for the primary purpose of play.

In a competition to design the “world’s best playground”, 6000 children contributed to the design. Inspired elements such as giant forest towers, climbing nets and construction of a brand new topography to embrace the four-metre high slide were made possible through engineering innovation and collaboration with over 100 technical specialists.WEA

In the first three weeks after opening the park received over 100,000 visitors. Surrounding businesses have experienced an upsurge in trade. People are travelling from far and wide and, most importantly, a broken part of the city is now filled with the healing sounds of laughter.

For this project, CERA collaborated with its partners, Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu and Christchurch City Council. The consultant was Opus International Consultants and the contractor was City Care.


HIGHLY COMMENDED: Kaimataara o Wai Manawa (or Le Roy’s Lookout). Auckland Council and Downer.

This project involved the design and construction of a new public open space, and adjacent café, overlooking the stunning Le Roy’s Bush in Birkenhead.

Kaimataara o Wai Manawa translates as “The Lookout of Wai Manawa”. Kaimataara o Wai Manawa was the name gifted by mana whenua for this special place.

Mana whenua artist Reuben Kirkwood worked with the project team to interpret and reflect the meaning of Wai Manawa, drawing on inspiration from the natural local environment.

A motif was created for application at several sites across the project. This design relates to the ecological richness of the site, in particular referencing water, seeds and balance in nature.

Constructed on a steep, narrow site and located in the heart of Birkenhead town centre, the two-level deck structure was built to extend out over the bush canopy to provide visitors with awe-inspiring and uninterrupted views over Le Roy’s Bush and beyond over Auckland Harbour.


This article first appeared in Contractor August 2017.

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