Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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From the Middle: Infrastructural Equity and the Potentials of a Landscape-Led South Pacific Urbanism

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posted on 2022-07-31, 23:11 authored by Wakelin, Matthew

This landscape design-led research investigates what a South Pacific urbanism may offer the living landscape of Cannon’s Creek in the City of Porirua. Initiated at the catchment level - whaitua – the research develops an understanding of ‘catchmentality’ though questioning poor water management, overlooked social infrastructure provision and the potentials of Pacific space, place and belonging in the context of urban growth. The research aims towards imagining infrastructural and spatial equity through exploring improvements to water quality, housing densification, and relational space. Ki Uta Ki Tai - holistic recognition of fresh water catchments supports design thinking alongside considered topographical attunements and alaga – nested space of relations - in the strategic extending of Cannon’s Creek’s local ecologies. Drawing from a variety of Polynesian thinkers an emergent and non-linear approach, akin to a ‘situated patchwork’ or Su’ifefiloi is honed as a relational way of practicing landscape design research. With these means the project finds an expressive way to make urban networks both visible and palpable to form meaningful relationships between community and local conditions through the life giving qualities of water.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Landscape Architecture

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Architecture (Professional)

ANZSRC Socio-Economic Outcome code

970112 Expanding Knowledge in Built Environment and Design; 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code


Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Wellington School of Architecture


Hopewell, Hannah