The locality called ‘Pakuranga’ is a Maori name meaning “battle of the sunlight,” based on the legend of a fierce overnight battle between mythical nocturnal monsters. To end the battle, a Maori priest summoned the sun to rise prematurely on the creatures who retreated to the nearby forests. It was said that even the dense forest canopy was not sufficient shelter from the fierce sun, and the creatures perished in the sun’s rays.
To honor this spiritual story the design features a continuous tree-like timber veranda, with vines growing up the posts that will, in time, create a foliage canopy filtering the sunlight through to the rooms and sheltered outdoor areas. This biophilic design extends through into the interior, where internal plants and extensive glazing gives a direct connection to the outdoors, and the expansive greenery of the golf course and park opposite. The extensive glazing maximizes views, daylighting and natural ventilation ensuring an optimal internal environment quality leading to positive health outcomes for the children and staff.
PV solar panels optimally sized so that all power generated is used on site – provides approx. 1/3 of yearly power needs. Power needs of the building are substantially reduced by maximizing daylighting and natural ventilation.