University of Waikato Law and Management Building, Hamilton, North Island

Celebrating 50 years with an iconic landmark

WSP Opus services delivered

  • Buildings
  • Architecture

Project overview

The construction of the iconic and landmark 6,000m2, five-storey University of Waikato’s law and management building – Te Piringa – marked the 50th anniversary of the university.

Challenge

The University of Waikato wanted a modern law faculty to be designed that reflected the local cultural identity within the surrounding Waikato region. It needed to be future-proofed, with flexible spaces, new offices and shared teaching spaces.

Importantly, it needed to link with the existing Management Faculty complex.

Solution

We began by designing the new law facility to directly link to the Management Faculty on two levels, so that the facilities could be easily shared between them. Its design also references existing buildings on campus, giving it a cohesive, complementary look.

To reflect the local cultural identity, we designed a ceremonial staircase that creates a journey illustrating the 50-year history of the University of Waikato. We also designed a sunken courtyard and grass roof to visually connect the building to the hills and countryside beyond.

All the internal spaces were designed to be transparent, flexible and shared. So, teaching spaces involve cutting-edge technology and ultramodern materials to create adaptable, shared spaces. The Moot Court is a fully functional courtroom, with demountable fittings. This means the space can be used for other purposes when it’s not set up as a courtroom.

We focused on creating a natural light-filled building and using sustainable design principles – ideally suited to this academic environment.

Category
Architecture, Buildings