Hutt at Heart
Artist impression of Naenae Hub

Naenae Community Hub moves forward

An important milestone for the new Naenae Community Hub was announced by Hutt City Council today following completion of the procurement process for the lead architect and principal construction company.

“We are delighted to announce the successful tenderers for the Naenae hub are construction company Hawkins and architectural company Designgroup Stapleton Elliott (DGSE). Hawkins is an industry leader in the Early Contractor Involvement Design and Build market, and together with DGSE, has shown an exemplary understanding of the requirements of this project,” says Matt Reid Hutt City Council’s City and Community Services Manager.

Lower Hutt Mayor Ray Wallace says, “We are excited to be moving forward on the Naenae hub. Our contractors have been asked to develop concept plans so that we can share these with the community and get their feedback. We have also asked members of the community to participate in a group working with the architects. This is an important part of the process and a crucial step forward as we move into the design phase for what will be an incredibly important community asset. We expect that like our other community hubs, the Naenae hub will make a real difference in the lives of tamariki, the elderly and all members of the Naenae community.

Eastern Ward Councillors Glenda Barratt and Lisa Bridson welcomed news that the Naenae hub is moving forward. “We want to make sure we have the best facilities that not only meet community aspirations, but also reflect Naenae’s rich history and connection to tangata whenua. At the same time we are continuing to talk with Naenae residents and businesses about reinvigorating central Naenae and discussing potential exciting new developments for the site of the current library.”

The $8M hub will be completed in late 2020 and will be designed as a multi-purpose facility. The large scale of the building will enable a variety of services to be delivered from the hub including Naenae Library, Naenae Clubhouse, and Hutt City Council’s outreach programme YOUth Inspire.

Spaces for educational and community programmes along with sport and recreational activities will be incorporated in the design. Consideration of the types of initiatives like digital technology and literacy programmes that will be run from the hub will be key factors influencing the design. The large open plan areas which can be divided off through moveable walls will mean activities like dance and yoga will be able to run alongside baby bounce programmes with ease.

Mike Mercer, Divisional Manager of Community Hubs says, “We are pleased to have formed a partnership with Hawkins and DGSE who each have a strong presence in Wellington and Lower Hutt.  Hawkins has a high level of local knowledge after building Koraunui Stokes Valley Community Hub, the Naenae Bowls Centre, and Walter Nash Centre. DGSE is an award winning architectural company and has a strong understanding of the requirements of community facilities, particularly integrated hubs, having designed Koraunui.”

Hawkins and DGSE have committed to employing local people on the project. Hawkins will take on building apprentices to work on the project and DGSE will have architectural students contributing to the designs. Each company has strong connections to Lower Hutt and will be working with Hutt City Council’s YOUth Inspire to create opportunities for young people to contribute to the project.

With the design and construction team now confirmed the Naenae hub moves into the concept phase which will involve community feedback at face to face meetings and via a questionnaire.

Background information

Naenae Community Hub will be a 1900m2 facility with many features that are important to the Naenae community including:

  • A large space for sports/activities, concerts and cultural activities and large conferences
  • Medium sized spaces with hard and soft floor surfaces for recreation, classes, events, arts programmes and other community activities
  • Smaller spaces for community meetings (e.g. Plunket groups)
  • Naenae Library which will have a new layout reflecting the latest in designs for modern libraries and offering a range of interconnected spaces providing areas for people to learn, create, explore, reflect and socialise
  • Naenae Clubhouse with a cutting-edge technology suite providing greater community access to digital mediums

Hawkins Construction is an industry leader in the Early Contractor Involvement Design and Build market. With a strong focus on social responsibility Hawkins is developing the next generation of building practitioners in partnership with local communities and will employ two apprentices on this project.

Designgroup Stapleton Elliott is part of Designgroup New Zealand. As a nationwide collection of architectural practices it is one of New Zealand’s largest, working together across nine offices to draw on relevant expertise and experience specific to each project. DGSE believes the quality of people’s surroundings has a direct influence on the quality of their lives, particularly when it comes to public spaces.

For more information visit the Naenae Library, or head to

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