The Christchurch Town Hall is a landmark not only in the city of Christchurch but also in the history of modern civic architecture in New Zealand. Suffering extensive damage as a result of the 2011 earthquakes, Warren and Mahoney — who designed the original 1972 building — has also led the restoration. Work included foundation strengthening, extensive repair and upgrades to meet current building codes, and fabric restoration to return the town hall to its former grandeur.
New work includes a facility for the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra and functional enhancements for staff and visitors. The original 1972 character — with its dark timbers, red fabrics, white marble and modernist artworks, have all been restored. Maintaining its period style, the interior has also been brought up to date to comply with new building standards.
The wide entry foyer on Kilmore Street features two sets of large glass, brass and timber doors, which create a wind lobby between the entry court and the atrium. Flanked by large white marble walls, the need for elegant, wall-to-wall entrance matting was solved with Advance Flooring’s CoralTread system.
CoralTread is manufactured to size in New Zealand and specially designed to avoid joiners or t-bars ensuring a safe and non-trip surface — so critical for public spaces. The sleek, low profile design is highly moisture-absorbent and traps dirt on specially designed aluminium corrugated rails. The mat in the Town Hall foyer measures 9.3 metres wide, resulting in a wall-to-wall finish for excellent functionality and as seamless as possible.
Project: Christchurch Town Hall Rebuild
Architects: Warren and Mahoney
Entry mat: CoralTread
Photographer: Graham Warman