The fourth and final gathering space in the South Frame – Kahikatea Common – is now open to the public in the block bordered by Montreal, Durham, St Asaph and Tuam Streets.
Ōtākaro Limited Chief Executive, John Bridgman, says Kahikatea Common is unique because the roof of an existing building has been integrated into the gathering space.
“The Donnithorne family has gone to great effort to retain the roof of their building and enhance Kahikatea Common. They’ve helped create another interesting place in the South Frame that will attract people and ultimately encourage further development in the area.”
Jason Donnithorne says a lot of people have a connection to the old Public Service Garage building.
“So many buildings have had to come down in the city so the opportunity to retain a bit of history, while enhancing a great new space for people, was one we couldn’t let pass by.
We’ve been able to save part of the old gantry up in the now exposed and painted roof trusses in what we hope will become an active all-weather space for the likes of exhibitions and markets.”
Kahikatea Common and the new Lava Lane include a range of outdoor seating, tables and gardens. Some plants have been specifically chosen for their traditional healing properties, to acknowledge the neighbouring Health Precinct.
A butterfly house and temporary pizza oven have also been brought into the space and will be looked after by local students.
“As we are seeing around Mataī Common and Little High Lane, these laneways and gathering spaces are a catalyst for further development. Whether it be cafés, accommodation, apartments or schools, these are projects that will bring people and activity into the city.
When finished, the South Frame will connect the One Central homes and Innovation Precinct to the east of the CBD to the Health Precinct and Avon River Precinct to the west, forming an entirely new pedestrian and cyclist friendly route around the central city,” says Mr Bridgman.
A community housewarming party will be held in Kahikatea Common this Friday as part of FESTA 2018.