Haumaru Housing – the partnership between Auckland Council & the Selwyn Foundation to develop homes for older people – has completed its 4-storey, 40-apartment Wilsher Village on a former council staff carpark in Henderson with a blessing by mana whenua to ready the space before tenants start to move in.
Council company Panuku Development Auckland Ltd undertook the development on 3000m² at 21-33 Henderson Valley Rd, next to Henderson High School. A separate development of 50-60 additional terrace homes aimed at families is earmarked for the rest of the 1.6ha.
All the one-bedroom, self-contained apartments have a 45m² floor area plus a terrace and the structure has been designed with the lifestyle necessities of older people in mind:
- Extra-wide hallways & lift access to help people on mobility scooters or wheelchairs get around more easily
- Windows at every door along the corridor will allow people to look in and check to see if their neighbours are ok
- Bathrooms are a fully accessible wet room
- Oven doors open like a cupboard (not the usual way by pulling the door down) – easier to use.
Other design features aren’t just suited to older people:
- It’s easy to maintain, warm & energy-efficient with a Homestar 7 rating
- It has sustainability features such as permeable concrete laid outside & rainwater recycled for garden & toilets
- Every unit has a recessed balcony that can be used all year round.
Through the Haumaru Housing limited partnership, Selwyn & the council have a programme to systematically upgrade 62 more residential villages around the Auckland region.
The Wilsher Village project has been no ordinary development, with artistic designs at the building entrance, a glazed façade, the entry gateway & fence:
- At the building entrance, artworks by Maori artist Graham Tipene reference the cultural narrative of the twin streams in Henderson
- The glazed façade design speaks to the flow of water at the Waitakere Ranges flowing into the twin streams Wai o Horotiu (Oratia Stream) & Wai o Panuku (Opanuku Stream) and into the Waitemata Harbour
- The entry gateway design speaks to the flow of the twin streams coming together to form Wai o Pareira before flowing out into the Wai o Te Mata Harbour; the outer ring design speaks to the nature of water drops & ripples.
- The fence design symbolises manaakitanga by way of a korowai which represents the embrace of warmth around the older people in this new community.
The completion of Wilsher lifts the number of Haumaru housing for older people units in Auckland to 1452. The next village locations Panuku will turn its attention to, in collaboration with Haumaru Housing, are Northcote, Green Bay, Old Papatoetoe & Mangere Bridge.
Attribution: Panuku release, Panuku & Selwyn websites.