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Design a Flexible Structure that could be Built Relatively Quickly

Waiparuru Hall is a 17-storey, 762 apartment student accommodation complex on Whitaker Place. The University of Auckland wanted a building that could be designed and built as cost effectively as possible in time for the start of the 2020 academic year. The Hall joins the existing international house but has been separated at the lower levels creating two separate towers.

​We were engaged very early on as structural engineers to the project. The site is adjacent to the motorway and is steep, so required close collaboration between us, the contractor and the other consultants.

Our role involved concept design through to construction monitoring, which is ongoing. We performed wind analysis and coordinated with the geotechnical engineer on the huge retaining walls that would be needed. The University was considering a range of options so we needed to be flexible in our designs to give them time to make their decisions, while ensuring the project didn’t fall behind schedule.

​The contractor was involved from developed design and we were novated at detailed design. Early contractor involvement was useful for testing design decisions.

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