West Plaza

(1972)

Since completion voted most years by architects and the general public as Auckland’s best building.  Auckland, New Zealand.

 

URBIS Magazine #46 Design Annual ’08
“West Plaza…this slender high-rise is an enduring Auckland favorite that exhibits a sense of glamour and sophistication missing from many of the city’s tall buildings. As architectural critic Bill McKay notes, “West Plaza helped turn Auckland “from big town to international city”

Weekend Herald – Canvas September 2006
Building Pride – Architect Adam Wild
West Plaza, 3-7 Albert Street
“This modern, lozenge-shaped high rise is a scheduled historic place on Auckland City Council’s district plan. Built in 1974 West Plaza is a prime example of age not being determined by heritage value, Wild Says. Wild sees the Auckland CBD structure as a statement of confidence that we too can be modern and inter-national”

Metro Magazine Anniversary Issue May 2006
The Metro 25 Shapers of Auckland
#21 Neville Price
“It is an unpalatable fact of city life that there are few buildings we might call noble. The exception is the West Plaza building in downtown Auckland. As soon as it was completed in 1972 by the firm Price Adams Dodd it was seen as a statement of a confident internationalism.  If Auckland was to be a genuine big city then the West Plaza building was the shining exemplar of that potential and for that we have former boatbuilder Neville Price to thank. He drew two graceful curves on a blank sheet and the rest followed with the help of his colleagues, who describe Price as an ambitions architect with a knack for a deal. Price’s hand can be seen in the turret-like Tower Block in Symonds St. In the late 1970s, Price left Auckland to practice in San Francisco. In 2005 the New Zealand Institute of Architects gave his West Plaza building the award for enduring architecture, noting “It is still head and shoulders above the other multistory developments and demonstrates that not all successful buildings need to be the same”

and…

Tower Block (1967) (82 Symonds Street Auckland)
Pete Bossley of Bossley Architects: “Bugger the functional problems of a circular floor plan -lets have a simple, clear, crisp, sweet building.”  A similar thing can be said of the West Plaza, notes Bossley.

Metro Magazine June 2005
Auckland Design Now
West Plaza Building (1972)
‘An architects darling, variously described as a cracker, a stunner and a beauty. This year NZIA awarded the sculptural building with the almond shaped floor plan a national award for Enduring Architecture “as iconic today as when it was first built West Plaza is very much of its time. The vertical fins cleverly mask the faceted nature of the exterior skin and these, together with the wind scoops a the base of the building and the curved plan, lend it an international quality. It is still head and shoulders above other multistory developments and demonstrates that not all successful buildings need to be the same”

NZIA Award 2005
2005 NZIA Enduring Architecture Award for West Plaza
‘in its contribution to the cityscape West Plaza remains a jewel to be treasured and an exemplar for future generations”

NZIA CROSS SECTION: Upfront March 2005
‘Still the best?
West Plaza: Its jury citation described it as “still head and shoulders above other multistory developments…a respected and desirable landmark building in the CBD of Auckland”

NZIA President Gordon Moller who has premises there.  “It seemed to us the West Plaza was a building that had considerable architectural quality, which everybody enjoys (not just architects). People do respond to architecture that addresses the issues of form in a way that makes an elegant contribution to the city”

NZ Herald September 15 1985
Sir Michael Fowler
…we catch sight of his favorite Auckland building Neville Price – designed West Plaza in Customs St. He likes the form, the way it shows the floors, the little sails breaking the sheer front “A very fine building”

Management, March 1972
Architecture and Modern Management
West Plaza now under construction….”Attractive buildings are not necessarily more expensive” “Everything we design must meet three basic criteria – it must meet the client’s budget, it must be good design and it must be functional” (Neville Price)