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Landscapes with a Silver Lining – NZILA Awards

It was a great night for Natural Habitats at the 2010 New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architecture Awards in Wellington last weekend.“This is the first time Natural Habitats has entered these awards, and all three of our entries have been award winning, which is a fanatastic achievement” says Graham Cleary owner of Natural Habitats.The Biannual Awards are intended to highlight the role landscape architects play in enhancing the distinctiveness of New Zealand’s urban and rural landscapes.

Two parks from the Stonefeilds development were entered by Natural Habitats. Volcano Park the first neighbourhood reserve to be built within the Stonefields development was awarded silver in the in the rural/park/recreational catergory.  Its design references the past and present geological condition of the area Sculptural elevated landform, jagged fractured paths, edging and scattered boulders reflect the massive volcanic form and geological story of Maungarei, which towers 130meters above sea level, and is one of the defining features of this site.

Click on an image below to enlarge gallery:

Kickaball park, which embodies the idea of play in every aspect of the design, also won silver in the in the rural/park/recreational category. Both awards were accepted by the reserves designer Debbie Tiako of Natural Habitats and James Lord of Surface Design, who was responsible for the development’s initial master plan.

“I designed the playground within Kickaball Park with my own children in mind” says Debbie. This appears to have been the key to success, the park was only completed a few months ago, but children are already using every inch of it, exactly how it was intended to be used.

The reserves scooped up all the silver awards in the rural/park/recreational category, reinforcing the high quality of design within the Stonefields development, which is Auckland’s largest master planned community encompassing 110 hectares and providing 2,900 dwellings that will house 6,500 people. The development looks set to become a precedent for sustainable development, and compact urban growth.

Natural Habitats is responsible for the initial concept design through the developed, detailed and contract phases of all reserves within the Stonefields Development. No doubt the design of the remaining parks will be of the same caliber.

The Parc, a roof garden oasis in the heart of Auckland CBD, won silver in the residential category. Designed by Debbie Tiako in 2002 The Parc was one of the first of roof gardens of this size to be constructed in New Zealand. “It is one of those spaces that continue to delight people year round” says Debbie.

The Parc’s expansive oval lawn, large chunky timber pergolas and pool are visually attractive when viewed at ground level and from the above apartments, and provide a degree of separation and privacy for the apartments on the ground level.

The aesthetic of the park, with its softly curving crushed limestone paths, clipped hedges, flowering cherry trees (Prunus ‘Awanui’) and sculptural citrus orchard complement the traditional architectural style of the surrounding buildings. It is easy to see why The Parc, a garden for the senses and the seasons is recognized as an award winning landscape.

For more information about Natural Habitats please visit their directory listing.

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