Friday, 9 October 2009

2009 NZ Timber Design Awards

If there’s one thing NZ architects should do well, it’s design in timber – especially now that plaster has so dramatically fallen out of fashion.  And since the entries for the 2009 NZ Timber Design Awards have just been posted, you can see just how well they can do.

Crosson-Clark Glade-House-1-LB

Here’s just a few of the two dozen or so entries.

House-at-Rotokauri-1-Thumb LEMP-1-LB

Click on the photos to go to the project page for each one.

Yellow-Treehouse-3-LB Style:

Do you have a favourite? 

Oriental-Bay-House-1-LB Yellow-Treehouse-2-Thumb

9 comments:

  1. Pity that only a few those examples are truly designed in timber. I think the real reason there is so little truly good design in timber in New Zealand (and I mean that in the context of real use, not just some examples), is because timber is so ridiculously expensive for something we have so much of.
    Also the lack in New Zealand of economically available timber based building products. I have never taken the trouble to find out why this is the case, but the prices of even the shoddiest timber standard houses are ridiculously high for the value they represent.

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  2. "...timber is so ridiculously expensive for something we have so much of.
    Also the lack in New Zealand of economically available timber based building products. I have never taken the trouble to find out why this is the case, but the prices of even the shoddiest timber standard houses are ridiculously high for the value they represent.
    "

    Yes, it is. You're right. I've never taken the trouble either to find out why, but I was talking about it the other night with a friend, thinking maybe we should.

    Why should building products and building costs here be around twice as much or more what they cost overseas?

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  3. PC, my simplistic explanation (that is without giving it too much thought) is the role of a couple of large timber 'barons' that have achieved an almost complete vertical integration of the supply chain of timber products, combined with the extremely restrictive effect of the RMA and building regulations. Add to this the typical NZ attitude of always stepping over a dollar to pick up a quarter and you have the recipe for this weird phenomenon.

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  4. Glade House is hot - sensitive intervention to a pre-existing house. Yellow Treehouse is funky and daring but a bit one-liney - be interesting to check out the detailing. Get the feeling it is probably something cooler to experience and be in than look at...

    DenMT

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  5. Aside from the economic concerns, perhaps much of the problem was that everybody was diverted from building with timber in the 80s. Timber is an obvious material with which to build in New Zealand but everybody wanted to be international, so they daubed on plaster and experimented with new materials, with often disastrous results. I have seen enough shiny metal for a lifetime. Perhaps the skill of timber building has been lost.

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  6. Hello. As a professional dealing with home staging in Canada I'm happy I got across your blog. I liked the houses designed in timber very much, I really appreciate your style. However, I had no idea about the high prices of timber in New Zealand at all. Thank you for the information, then.
    Take care,
    Sara

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  7. I like the tree house, but I have to go with 1 as it looks the same as my house - only mine is all corrugated iron - barely 1 piece of timber in the whole place (apart from some weatherboards inside)
    Even the framing is in steel

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  8. perhaps I should add that about 6 years ago I had the steel framing for my house delivered to Tauranga from Auckland, erected, including all the roof beams for LESS than the equivalent to be pre-cut in timber Not including delivery, construction of the house AND the roof beams! so that is why I thought I would give the steel framing a try.

    I did a lot of the work on my house myself, and It was great actually

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  9. Tomahawk Kid

    Yes, I did the same thing.

    Steel. Cheaper than wood. Who would have thought it? Next time I might try aluminium.

    LGM

    PS the way things are going it may be that titanium will become a useful civil construction material. Some looming developments mean it soon won't be anywhere as expensive as presently.

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