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Balmoral, Auckland has some great hidden spaces around its heritage architecture.

Capitol Cinema Balmoral drawings
Capitol Cinema

Although humble in scale and ornament, Balmoral contains a whole heap of heritage architecture that speaks of a semi-urban condition. Most of the buildings are 2 storey with residential uses often on top. In recent times there are some which have become commercial too, with doors leading up a long flight of stairs to some great eateries (eg Gogo Music Cafe, My Kitchen)

Ngaire Chambers heritage architecture Balmoral
Ngaire Chambers

Balmoral maintains a strong flat frontage to Dominion Road. A part of its character, but it also leaves little room for variety or on street usage. The heritage front is accompanied by a rather messy feeling, haphazard back end - there are strong service lanes on both sides of Dominion Road with some very interesting spaces.

The buildings have changed from use to use over the years - the most valued heritage building, the Capitol Cinema, went from a theatre to what is now part theatre, part climbing wall and mah-jong hall, to name a few. The service lane doubles as a residential mini-street with laundry hanging, people meeting and talking. The Warehouse orientates itself to utilise the service lane too, making a more Asian street feeling, multipurpose space than the mainstreet. I've no doubt I'll be making use of these spaces in my project as much as the street front.

Behind the row of shops, a condition very different from the street front.

1 comment:

  1. Currently modelling a part of the Balmoral shops, investigating a potential intervention.


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