A Simple Gesture

A Simple Gesture

The Harbour View Apartments in Auckland Central Business District (CBD), New Zealand, was a 16-story blue leftover of the 80’s.  There had been previous attempts to update it, but the plans all proved too expensive.  Architect Stephenson&Turner designed a remodel that kept costs within range by  focusing on a few elements and re-envisioning them.

Says the architect: “Our design idea, drawing inspiration from water and light, sought to help Harbourview find the identity promised in its name. Key themes were “white” and “fluidity”; curves instead of angles, soft instead of hard.”

The blue exterior was painted white, except for the base of the balconies.

“The balustrades were replaced with glass, allowing occupants an uninterrupted view of the harbour. From below, the series of curved, glass-fibre soffits create a simple wave pattern, suggesting both strength and movement.”

One gracefully curved element, repeated up the entire facade, was transformative.  A single molded form – lightweight and affordable – is added, and the balconies themselves seem to lose their weight.

Photos © Simon Devitt except as noted.  via archdaily.com “Harbour View / Stephenson&Turner” 31 Jan 2012.