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Design Review: Volume 4, Issue 6 (January-February 1953)

The Naenae Community Centre

page 138

The Naenae Community Centre

Two Views of Model.See Front Cover for Further View.

Two Views of Model.
See Front Cover for Further View.

Key Plan.

Key Plan.

One of the disadvantages about the act of town planning is the length of time which elapses between the formulation of a plan on paper and its realisation in terms of buildings completed. The town planner must indulge in polemics to a certain extent and inevitably with some people words and arguments fail to convince. He must somehow demonstrate his arguments in a form comprehensible to the layman.

Obviously then some sort of physical demonstration is needed to illustrate what is proposed in a planning scheme, either in whole or in part. To build the thing in bricks and mortar is of course out of the question. The next best thing is to build a scale model and this is what the Housing Department has done with their Nae Nae Community Centre proposals.

The beautifully-made model illustrated in the accompanying photograph shows what the Nae Nae residents may expect as a centre for their Community activities. As an arrangement you will notice from the key plan the provision made for car parking. There is, too, a properly arranged area for bus transport facilities. Traffic flows neatly around this “civic island” leaving the island itself to be explored on foot as is proper. The shops are served with goods through service lanes at the rear and so pavements are unencumbered. The Civic space at the core of the scheme is fronted by the local post office, two cinemas as well as the shops, and a hotel is included in the scheme.

As you will see from the photographs of the modelr, great care has been taken to exploit the visual effect of the arrangement, and the overall architectural result has been achieved only by the studied relationships of the parts to the whole enlivened by imagination and design.

When the scheme has become a full size working model and may be viewed in the flesh so to speak, the Hutt Valley Community will be the possessors of a centre of which they can be proud and town planners will surely have less need to convince by word of mouth.