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The Store - Pillbox Conversion - New Zealand

Building Occupancy / Site Capacity: 

Redundant and decommissioned pillboxes are littered across the idylic coastline of New Zealand. Never were they put to use, but they remain a very real and cemented reminder of New Zealands war history. There are a series of ‘arrow-like’ bunkers which are generously spread along the coastline north of Napier, New Zealand. Everyday, thousands of locals and tourists pass these isolated concrete mounds that shield state highway 2 from the ocean. These bunkers have been redundant for quite some time; the concrete is coated in a thick layer of moss and the gun cutouts have recently had grates put over them to prevent vandalism. The goal is to open up these structures to the community.; promote use from all areas of society and to celebrate the natural beauty of New Zealand.

‘The Store’ is a service stop along a main highway stretch of the New Zeland coastline. It is to cater for both locals and tourists. Coffee and food are available fresh every morning for those travelling to work; toilets and live area information available for those travelling the country. Machinegun placement cutouts are used to frame the scenery, to celebrate the present while also remembering the past. Live information screens provide weather information and also promote activities to do locally. The concept has been endorsed by Napier City Council and is seen as a positive foot forward; in both preserving New Zealands war history while providing numerous services for the wider community.


_14,105 Cars per day will be exposed to The Store - tourists, workers and locals - encouraging maximum use by the community
_Each bunker would cost approximately $68,000 NZD to convert. This could potentially be funded by Napier City Council.
_Herbs and Vegetables are grown in large troughs, these are available for the use of locals and travelling campervan tourists.
_Rainwater is collected with the angled roof and led to the service void through the guttering. Water utilised for toilets and cafe.
_A Coffee and Food offering is available with scenic views framed by what were gun placements
_Solar roof panels capture energy which is stored in battery cells within the service void


New Zealand

Competition Details

  • Name: Open Architecture Challenge: [UN]Restricted Access
  • Host: Architecture for Humanity
  • Type: Public
  • Registration Deadline: May 01 2012
  • Submission Deadline: June 01 2012
  • Entry Fee: $50 USD Professionals , $25 USD Students , $0 USD Dues paying Architecture for Humanity Chapter members , $0 USD Developing Nations
  • Award: More than $5,000 in prizes
  • Status: Concluded

The competition entry ID for this project is 12262.

Project Details

NAME: The Store - Pillbox Conversion - New Zealand
PROJECT LEAD: Andy Florkowski
LOCATION: Napier, New Zealand
START DATE: May 16, 2012
CURRENT PHASE: Design development
COST: $47000 USD (Estimated)
PROJECT TYPE: Community Center
DESIGNER: Andy Florkowski
BENEFICIARIES: Tourists, campers, campervans, local community, council and local businesses
ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT: Sustainable and local materials sourced. Captured rainwater and sunlight to make premises self-sustainable. Recycled pallets to create tables, POS etc.

About Our Partners

Sponsorship Needed We're continuing our recruitment of individuals and organizations who are ready to accept the mission of sponsoring the complex yet rewarding task of successfully transforming previously conflicted sites into civic spaces. If you are ready to enlist your financial resources in service of this greater good, please call us at 415.963.3511 or contact us.