Purewa building upgrade to aid grieving families

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December 13, 2017
Purewa connects to the community
March 8, 2018

Purewa building upgrade to aid grieving families

One of Purewa’s major works for 2018 is the extension and upgrade of the Administration building – a feature of which is the provision of a Quiet Room for private family use.

The redesigned building will retain its original footprint but will increase in both size and facilities offered. As well as its administrative offices, it will feature two new interview rooms and a Quiet Room, which will be made available to grieving families who have just lost a loved one and need a quiet, private space to sit.

The service will streamline the current ordering process, eliminating form filling, hand drawn sketches, proofing and paperwork for superior three-way communication between Purewa administration, families and the plaque manufacturer.

Purewa Cermetery Trust Board member and professional architect John Bukowski will oversee the redesign, as he did the construction of the St John’s Lounge which was opened 12 months ago.

‘‘Demand for new services and facilities has increased over the years, particularly regarding the public’s interest in genealogy searches, ash plot inquiries, and other forms of memorialisation – as well as the family need for privacy,’’ Mr Bukowski says.
He says the new design will be a marked change from the old 80s/90s look.

‘‘The architectural language will be far more in sympathy with the natural surroundings of the Purewa grounds, and in particular with the nearby St John’s Lounge with its cedar and brick elements, echoing although not copying that design. It will sit neatly in the park environment with its significant trees and gardens.’’

Mr Bukowski says the existing building has had issues with the roof structure and steel trusses all near the end of their useful life.

‘‘Today there is much closer scrutiny on matters like structural integrity and water-proofness,’’ he says.

‘‘It’s a big investment for us, but the Trust Board considers it to be an important step not only as Purewa’s ‘front of house’ but in looking into the future. It is a significant part of the upgrade of services which Purewa wishes to provide for the community.’’

The redesigned building is currently undergoing the resource consent process, with construction planned to start in May – a four-to-six month project.

The building has been designed by prominent Auckland architectural firm Babbage Architects.

- Courtesy of East & Bays Courier (Fairfax Media)
Story and photos by Keith Whitten                          

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