Three-level car park planned behind redeveloped CPO

An artist's impression shows the three-level car park to be built behind the former chief post office in Dunedin.

Earthworks for a three-level car park to be built behind the former chief post office in Dunedin are expected to start within a month.

Stephen Cairns of Arrow International said the project had resource consent, and was awaiting the final stages of its building consent to be signed off.

The building would be used by patrons of the proposed Distinction Hotel, to be developed inside the former chief post office on Princes St.

Consent has also been granted for the construction of a free-standing canopy between the car park and the former chief post office on the Bond St side of the building, under which buses can pull up.

That section of Bond St has officially been stopped and is to be where the hotel's main entrance will be located.

According to the resource consent the access to the car park, which would also have some public and leased parking, was from the Water St side and the exit from Liverpool St.

Never heard of an underground parking garage?

I am surprised you have never heard of underground parking. It's been around for a while. They are not suitable for all sites, such as perhaps this one, but are generally considered less intrusive. They also free up ground level and above for other purposes. As Architectural Record has observed, "In the Pantheon of Building Types, the parking garage lurks somewhere in the vicinity of prisons and toll plazas."

The importance of green spaces in urban environments has also been established for a long while; scientific studies of green spaces and their beneficial effects on the health of urban populations have even been conducted. As I posited, the builder of the parking garage can still incorporate landscaping in his design, which might soften the harsh, cold, grey and industrial presence of this new functional structure. Design is important, especially if you have to look at it often. This parking garage will also form part of visitors first impressions of downtown Dunedin. On the travel blogs, I have often seen Dunedin described as "just a city" and as described as kind of grey.

If one day the city showed up and said they needed to build a barrier in front of your house and presented you with options: a unadorned cement wall, a brick wall, a wooden wall fronted with trees and flowers, which would you pick? I repeat, design is important. 


A 3 level parking complex under gound? why don't we just push all the cars in the harbour now?

It's a parking complex it's built to serve a purpose not act as a iconic piece of architecture. 

I have never seen a beautiful parking garage

I love modern architecture, but I have never seen a beautiful parking garage and this one certainly doesn't look extraordinary (though I would like to be proved wrong). I am wondering if it would be so difficult to put parking underground in this area. Is the ground here not right for this?

How about an underground parking garage with a park, landscaped plaza or terraced gardens with a fountain on ground level? This would have been a more pleasing complement to the newly renovated building behind it, plus grey downtown areas could always benefit from more green space, and places for people to sit.  

I hope the owner of this new boxy parking garage at least incorporates a bit of landscaping into the design, on the roof or around the perimeter. 

It's boring

O999: It's gray, it's boring, it's '30s industrial, which fits the back-end of the CPO I guess. It's hardly 'modern' though. Could they go so far as to hang some greenery off of it?

I'm not even against a little bit of colour - even a bit of orange - to break up the gray, just not the block solid  corporate livery so many companies' foreign marketing departments force upon us.

Bond St stoppage

This section of Bond St between Water and Liverpool streets was 'sold' to a previous owner of the former CPO, George Wu. From memory, this was prior to 2000 and advanced by the former City Engineers department to facilitate redevelopment for a hotel with a connected (by air bridge) parking facility.

Come on Dunedin, Grow up a bit!

Hi MikeStk, what is wrong with the design. It is classic and will go with the hotel and the surrounding building. It's not Orange, it's not glass, it's not 27 storeys high, it's not offensive, it will get used, it's a carpark. I can't see what the problem is. 

Why is it so hard for people in dunedin to encourage abit of modernism, a bit of new into the town. If people are so worried over the look of a carpark, Why don't people start complaining about all the concrete boxes/buildings/warehouses that are going up everywhere? They are more ugly and out of character than the carpark design.

The real question here is.....

how on earth did this get consent so fast and fly under the radar?

DCC playing favourites as usual I'd say. 

Bond street closed?

It's a car park, a box designed for stacking smelly boxes, it's not hard to design a boring one, as Elizabeth says a ventilated surface is required - it wouldn't be hard to make something that doesn't look totally like every other box full of boxes, does everything in Dunedin have to be gray? does it have to have the Dunedin naz tourist blackletter font on it too? surely we will eventually realise that the nazi-tourist market is actually quite small.

I'm surprised that Bond street is to be permanently stopped - it's going to be much harder to get to both my dentist and my lawyer because of the one way street and bike lane and the no turns/divided streets on the other sides of the block the block north of there is going to be even harder to get to.

Design and innovation

A dead lump? Lack of applied design research, architectural and contextual? A builder special? Good examples of contemporary parking buildings abound, you would expect a great ventilated skin(s), and or vertical landscaping, a green roof - anything innovative and intelligent for bulk and location, but this. This is a significant site for the warehouse/Exchange area; a parking building on a privately owned site can provide many more levels of character and amenity.


Have to agree

Agree with Opinion999 and as for lgn's comment , At 24 storeys lower lower than the proposed hotel it doesn't impact on the cityscape , also it appears the carpark even looks better than the 100 million dollar hotel , maybe Betterways should have employed the same deign team instead of copying the 1960's UN building.


All the City Capes are soggy. Us jokers promenade on the streetside so ladies are not splashed by passing buggies. Well might you ask about the City Cape.

Looks awesome

I think that it looks really awesome and fits in with the area. A little touch of modern mixed in with the old. Well done!!!!

what about the citycape?

Shouldn't be building that there it does not sit well with the other buildings in its surroundings. Looks just like the 5 star hotel they wouldn't allow to be built. What are people going to say? Not the right design looks like it should be in Auckland not our backward small minded town

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