Queen St upgrade makes national awards

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Auckland’s controversial Queen Street upgrade is up for a prestigious national design award.
The multi-million dollar makeover of New Zealand’s busiest street is among a record number of entries competing for an award from the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architects (NZILA).

A total of 97 entries have been received for the 2008 NZILA Resene Pride of Place Landscape Awards, almost double the 50 that took part last time the biennial event was held in 2006.
Entries have been received from around the country, and range from large-scale projects such as the Northern Gateway project at Orewa and a sustainable housing project in Takanini, to residential gardens and a trio of remote baches in Pelorus Sound.

The awards have three main categories — planning, design and student — while awards of excellence will be given out for colour and sustainability.
In addition there are two supreme awards — the George Malcolm Supreme Award for Landscape Design, and the Charlie Challenger Supreme Award for Landscape Planning.

The Pride of Place awards celebrate the best in landscape architecture in New Zealand, while the student awards provide a glimpse into the future of the profession.
There are nine judges, among them Debbie Saegenschnitter, a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects, who says she wants to see that the people involved have researched and understand their sites, and that their designs work with the sites and are not imposed on them,” she says.

“I don’t like anything fussy that tries too hard. A good design shows restraint.”
Finalists were to be selected on February 29, with the awards announced at a ceremony at Auckland’s Hyatt hotel on Saturday, April 5, during the NZILA’s annual conference weekend.

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