Published: 16 January 2023
A blessing has been held today to mark the beginning of construction on a new community centre for Naenae.
The former post office in Naenae’s Hillary Court will be earthquake strengthened and refurbished to retain its modernist exterior while creating a new and flexible community space within.
The project is a partnership between the local community and Hutt City Council and is part of a revitalisation of Naenae town centre alongside the construction of the new Naenae Pool and Fitness Centre. Both facilities are due to open in 2024.
Lower Hutt Mayor Campbell Barry says this milestone demonstrates further progress on rejuvenating the Naenae town centre.
“Alongside rebuilding Naenae Pool and the spatial plan, constructing this new community space will enable people to come together, and breathe new life into the town centre.”
The centre has been designed in consultation with the community and will feature multiple spaces for community activities, including a kitchen, flexible open-plan spaces and a co-working space, providing a space for the community to gather and connect.
The post office building was built in 1959 by the Ministry of Works under government architect Gordon Wilson and district architect John Blake-Kelly and is a stand-out architectural feature of Naenae.
“The post office building is a landmark in Hillary Court and it will help bring the centre of Naenae back to life when it reopens as a space for the community,” says Eastern Ward Councillor Andy Mitchell.
Lower Hutt construction company Duncan Commercial will lead construction of the refurbishment which will cost $5 million.
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