121 Grafton Rd, Grafton, Auckland, New Zealand

Rising through the historic Pohutukawa trees high above the south-eastern corner of Grafton Bridge, A+ Design Group’s latest project, Grafton Place, will mark this important Auckland site and redefine a new sense of place and meeting point for Grafton.

Two lanterns capping the tops of residential towers will identify and mark this important site, juxtaposed against the city skyline. The development consists of 133 unique residences, each with an outlook to the CBD, Rangitoto Island or distant views to Mt Eden and beyond. A landscaped podium courtyard is oriented to protect the residents from prevailing winds and provides the perfect place to gather with family, friends and neighbours.

The sculptural design with faceted, angular facades references to the volcanic rock foundation of the city, contributes a new public plaza and meeting place and is comprised of a carefully proportioned and scaled podium and tower. The composition of quality materials, natural light and fresh air to lobbies combined with a considered relationship to other neighbouring developments and streets contributes to the contemporary development. A public plaza, cafes, bars and landscaped green space open the stone podium to the ground plane at Grafton Road, creating an ambience that provides both a new sense of place for Grafton and a unique identity for the building. An amphitheatre connecting the heritage staircase off Grafton Bridge opens up an opportunity for the public to catch a setting sun as a backdrop to the city skyline. With a strong focus on environmental and sustainable design, the building is sited to maximise natural light and reduce solar loading from the harsh summer sun. The design facilitates access to public transport and makes provision for future transportation and developing technologies including car share, electric bicycles and car charging stations.