The Grand Central Markets; Heritage-led Regeneration through adaptive reuse
There is growing acceptance that heritage buildings are an important element of New Zealand’s social capital and that heritage conservation provides economic, cultural and social benefits to urban communities. The role of building conservation has changed from preservation to being part of a broader strategy for urban regeneration and sustainability. Heritage-led regeneration through reuse presents an opportunity to encourage the enhancement and protection of both existing built heritage and New Zealand’s historic building stock.
Over the years, there has been significant loss of historic heritage in the Auckland city centre, and a number of heritage buildings continue to suffer from neglect, decay, under-use or insensitive new design. There is a need to properly integrate these heritage assets into New Zealand’s future planning strategies. This thesis investigates strategic planning schemes and visions for a mixed-use development to support urban regeneration in Auckland’s City Centre.
Imposing a design-led approach, this research will begin by a broad critique of building preservation, adaptive reuse and placemaking theories. In conjunction with this, internationally recognised adaptive reuse, mixed-use and urban regeneration projects will be reviewed. Utilising international literature and precedents, an adaptive research approach is applied to the former Auckland Railway Station in order to demonstrate its potential to be revitalised into a contemporary mixed-use development that reflects Auckland’s diverse cultural mix. The objective of this research investigation is to form a critical design approach to allow the former Auckland Railway Station to become the heart and soul of the community whilst establishing an ecologically sound future. The process will involve a layered response; respecting and conserving the existing fabric, harnessing the ‘sense of place’ and applying interventions that promotes occupation and community engagement.