Ngāi Tahu Property, in partnership with ACC Investments, is developing a 4-storey, 8,600 sqm office building nestled in Dunedin's historical precinct between Dowling Street and Queens Gardens.
Gifted the name Ōtepoti by mana whenua, the building site was originally part of the Ōtākou foreshore which is also named Ōtepoti. Ōtepoti is the ancient name given to the site for the distinctive corner shape of the harbour at its original site. It reflected the shape of a ‘Poti’ a flax basket used for gathering and transporting food.
The design of the building, developed in partnership with mana whenua, is grounded in the renewal of the placename, Ōtepoti. The architects, Warren & Mahoney, have ensured the building is both sympathetic to its historical location and built with sustainable outcomes in mind.
The exterior glazing, designed by local Ngāi Tahu artist Kirsten Parkinson, includes printed artwork which reflects the woven pattern of a traditional poti basket. It also has a functional purpose and was developed in conjunction with building energy modelling software to control daylight levels to reduce the energy use of the building.
There is also an aim to achieve a 20% reduction in embodied carbon by incorporating mass timber stairs, internal timber framing, and sustainable, responsibly sourced interior finishes. This is a testament to the commitment of Ngāi Tahu Property and ACC Investments to not just preserve the environment but to actively contribute to its improvement.
ACC will be the sole tenants in the building, while Ngāi Tahu Property will take on the role of property manager, ensuring the building's upkeep once it's completed.
At its current progress, Ōtepoti is expected to be completed in mid-2025.