NZ IceFest Hub NZ IceFest Hub NZ IceFest Hub NZ IceFest Hub NZ IceFest Hub NZ IceFest Hub NZ IceFest Hub

NZ IceFest Hub

Reinvigorating a bare Christchurch Central City site and adjacent parts of Cathedral Square

Boffa Miskell has designed the concept for the NZ IceFest Hub, which reinvigorates a bare Central City site and adjacent parts of Cathedral Square. The NZ IceFest Hub represents the physical and emotional heart of IceFest and will be a launch pad from which people link to numerous satellite activities hosted across the city.

The design of the NZ IceFest Hub attempts to emulate parts of the Antarctic environment and the human experience of being ‘down on the ice’. While we cannot all travel to Antarctica, the NZ IceFest Hub allows the community to get a multi-sensory experience of what it might be like to be there in person. This is presented in a fun and interactive way, with the aid of exhibits and familiar features, to pick up on the essential qualities of the place. This approach aims to give people of all ages a greater appreciation for the Antarctic context, so they can better relate to this unique place when issues about Antarctica’s future are discussed.

The design, assembly, commissioning and fabrication of the various site features has responded to a number of qualities the Boffa Miskell and the Christchurch City Council’s Events Production Team have identified, which complements the NZ IceFest philosophy and those values of its key sponsors. These include:

  • Transitional: The festival is a neat fit with the wider concept of transitional projects, currently emerging throughout Christchurch. Transitional projects provide a temporary presence and activation of the city, while longer term development projects establish.
  • Creative: This is essential to make the festival ‘sing’. Innovative and imaginative approaches have been used in collaboration with artists to create a distinctive and engaging hub, while being delivered quickly and with minimal resources.
  • Environmentally Sustainable: This is closely aligned to the ambition for and practicalities of life in Antarctica. Consideration has been given to using materials from a known sources; giving preference to locally supplied skills and products; reuse and recycling of materials to avoid excessive waste; and lifecycle costs and energy efficiency in construction and operation of the site.
  • Cost effective: A balance has been struck between providing an uplifting and informative hub while thinking about cost effective ways of achieving the desired effect throughout its creation, event production, operational and management of the NZ IceFest Hub.
  • Recognisable: One of the goals of the festival is to provide ongoing support for Christchurch as one of the key gateways to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. The design of the NZ IceFest Hub complements the overall festival brand, as reflected in print and media publications.

The facts

ClientChristchurch City Council
Project teamTim Church
Project date2014