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The University of Auckland's new Fale Pasifika is part meeting house and concert hall and part educational facility

Pacific point of view

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Creating a bridge between two distinct groups in Auckland – the Pacific community and the University of Auckland – was one of the aims behind the new Fale Pasifika complex.

After 10 years of planning and consultation, this project has now been completed. Its purpose is to meet the modern needs of the more than 2000 Pacific students at the university, as well as other students in the city and the Pacific community in Auckland.

The Fale Pasifika complex includes a malae, or greeting area, that leads up to the fale – a traditional Pacific Island meeting house. Surrounding the fale are several new buildings that house facilities for Pacific research, teaching and student services. Pacific art is displayed throughout the complex, which is laid out in a village style.

Designed by Ivan Mercep of Jasmax Architects, the fale itself is 11 metres high, 26 metres long and 15 metres wide, and provides seating for up to 300 people. It also contains a moveable stage.

Traditional materials such as timber poles for the structural skeleton of the building and timber cladding on the ceiling have been used both inside and out, in keeping with the architect's desire to give the fale a natural textured finish.

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One of the criteria for this project was to ensure that buildings around the fale were built using complementary designs and materials.

Dimond was contracted to supply its V-Rib roofing for the academic wings on either side of the entrance to the fale. Dimond V-Rib in Habitat Grey Flannel was chosen to tone in with the charcoal CertainTeed asphaltic shingle roof of the fale.

Dimond marketing communications manager Scott Townsend says Dimond V-Rib has a clean-cut, striking appearance that is well suited to the aesthetics of the facility.

"V-Rib also suited the curved design of the roof, because it is the strongest drape-curved roofing profile available," says Townsend.

To ensure the required smooth curve was achieved, Harper Roofing installed the roof.

A symmetrical profile, V-Rib, was also used on the roof of Auckland restaurant Mikano, and on the Giltrap Porsche showrooms. The complex roof of Mikano particularly suited the extensive curving capabilities of V-Rib.

To find out more, contact Dimond, phone 0800 Dimond (0800 346 663), or visit the website:www.dimond.co.nz .

First published date: 25 March 2005

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