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Official Guide to the Government Court: N.Z. Centennial Exhibition

Housing Construction Department

Housing Construction Department

In front of the pavilion a curved brick wall has been constructed of common bricks as used in house construction. At its base rests a model of a typical housing scheme carried out by the Department. To the rear of the brickwork are showcases with revolving models of various types of houses, including two interiors. Above the showcases on the curved front a series of murals has been designed, the panel on the left showing the development of house design over the last 100 years, the centre indicating the various building materials employed, the right panel depicting the effects of good housing on health.

Over the sides of the pavilion inclined graph boards have been formed, the background being photomurals of the Department's housing activities. The number of houses for which tenders have been called, the number under construction, and the number completed are shown by graph lines. The art and science of house planning is shown in pictorial form. The increase in population and the increase in the number of houses during the last century, the number of dwellings built by State financial and municipal assistance, together with the number of new houses still required, is also shown. The channels through which £1000 is spent in constructing a house are illustrated pictorially.

Two models of multi-unit dwellings are exhibited. One scheme at present under construction in Wellington contains 50 flats, the other 136. The adjacent photograph of a slum locality illustrates the kind of unhealthy area the multi-unit dwellings are intended to replace.

The kitchen of to-day is contrasted, by two full-size models, with the kitchen of yesterday. That of yesterday is shown with fuel stove, an absence of cupboards and fittings, high ceilings, and dark-stained walls; the kitchen of to-day is shown with the actual fittings used in the State houses. The kitchen has now become a pleasant, efficient workroom where the daily tasks may be performed with the minimum of effort.