Taiora QEII Recreation and Sports Centre is a new facility built on the site of the original and much loved QEII stadium and pools. These were originally built for the 1974 Commonwealth Games but were destroyed in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake.
The new centre includes a 25m competition pool with an innovative moveable floor, learn to swim, leisure, hydrotherapy, toddler and spa pools, a 130m long hydroslide and gym, meeting rooms and café.
Helping to bring Taiora QEII Centre back to East Christchurch was a project Fox & Associates took on board with open arms. Typical of large scale legacy projects, the work was both challenging and multi-faceted. By the time the project was complete, six staff had made more than 60 site visits and had produced around 80 set-out diagrams, plans and drawings.
Our involvement began in May 2016 with a topographic survey of the entire 36 ha park using the FOX UAV. Then, at the request of the Ministry of Education, we completed a more detailed survey of an 8 ha area of the park that was being acquired for the new Avonside Girls and Shirley Boys High Schools. This was followed by a legalisation survey to set the land apart for the schools and support the acquisition of the school land from the Council.
This survey was challenging because the ground was significantly earthquake affected with some boundaries up to 600mm different to their pre-quake lengths. The park also had a number of neighbouring titles so care was needed to ensure that all titles were respected. Our extensive involvement in the site caught the eye of Apollo Projects, so much so that we were invited to be involved in their ultimately successful tender for the design and build of Taiora.
From January 2017 to June 2018, we were involved in a wide variety of survey work that included the set-out of the pools, hydroslide, drainage and the carpark kerb and channel and gridlines and blockwork. We certified the competition pool ensuring the pool met international swimming standards. We also provided as-built drawings and a building location certificate to assist with building consent compliance.
Our team’s expertise is what made this challenging project a complete success. For example, the legalisation survey utilised Alex’s background in Crown property acquisition and large-scale cadastral surveying. Morgan’s civil engineering knowledge meant he could identify and resolve minor design problems before these were translated into construction. Even successfully setting out the lazy river and certifying the competition pool required ‘outside the square’ thinking from our team.
Apollo Projects were initially uncertain that a small firm like Fox & Associates would be able to provide the necessary support. However, this concern proved to be unfounded, and we impressed with our ability to respond at the last minute when required. In the words of one project manager “You guys are a pleasure to deal with.” It was very satisfying to contribute to the reconstruction of Taiora and bring back a much loved part of East Christchurch.