Gallery may move entrance

Forrester Gallery: Alternative Entrance Design - McKenzie Architects.
Forrester Gallery: Alternative Entrance Design - McKenzie Architects.

The side of the Forrester Gallery could be used as the main entrance for the building when it undergoes its $6 million redevelopment.

There is a car park at the back of the building on Humber St and the present main entrance is on lower Thames St.

With no plans to staff two main entrances, putting an entrance on the side of the building, accessible both from the street and a rear car park, was a sensible proposal Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher said.

‘‘What this does is it puts people right into the centre of the building — as soon as they walk in they’re there. That’s where the lifts and stairs are . . . it makes use of the space well.’’

Mr Kircher said he was not a fan of design by committee but this was a major component of the plan. Next Wednesday, councillors would decide between the three entrance options for the redevelopment of the 1882 Heritage New Zealand category 1 registered site.

Concept drawings by Dunedin architect John McKenzie released on Thursday show the decision council staff are recommending.

Council community services group manager Thunes Cloete said because the proposed entrance was off Thames St, it was important to have a ‘‘visually appealing’’ design as a ‘‘teaser’’ for people to enter the new building.

The redevelopment of the gallery is planned to incorporate the North Otago Museum and the Waitaki District Archive.

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