Manukau Interchange Redevelopment Mk3 – and Incorporating Te Papa North

Incorporating Te Papa North into a working design


While I continue to work on the “Looking at Developing a 21st Century Auckland – Series” post that will ‘drawing up a recommended strategy for Manukau’s 21st Century development and how that should be undertaken’ I was going back over a Sketch Up piece and realised something. I could incorporate Te Papa North that is planned to be built on Hayman Park (Manukau) into the Manukau Interchange Mk2 development and we get to keep a large bit of green space.

To give a brief context on both Auckland Transport’s plans for the Manukau Interchange and Te Papa North being proposed by Government and Council I will run a brief recap first.


Te Papa North

Te Papa in Manukau

What Might This Mean

With the Unitary Plan now set for formal notification and the Special Housing Areas also now being prepared, attention can go back focus on other aspects of Auckland.

In the weekend it was announced that Te Papa (our National Museum) had entered a partnership with various groups and is to build an “outpost” in Manukau City Centre. I make mention of this here: Te Papa Coming to Manukau – Auckland and recommend reading it first to bring yourself up to speed if you have not already done so

For easier reference this is where the outpost is possibly going to be located:

Te Papa outpost site

As you can see it is on the west fringe of the Manukau (Super) Metropolitan Centre area and is easily accessible by road, bus and rail (relatively so). The facility will not more than 450 metres away is both the Westfield Mall and Rainbows End theme park. The MIT campus is right next door (as is the Manukau Train Station and Bus Interchange) with the AUT campus at the north-eastern end (Corner of Te Irirangi Drive and Great South Road). The airport is 15 mins away by road and we have the surrounding population which contributes to around 38% of Auckland’s total population.

Te Papa coming to Manukau rather than Wynyard Quarter is very good news not only for Auckland but also for Southern Auckland as well. Thus I am going to take a “high-level” look at Te Papa in Manukau – now that Mankau is well and truly  OPEN FOR BUSINESS. 




For the Manukau Interchange Proposal by Auckland Transport:

By Patrick Reynolds, on August 12th, 2013

There has been a lot of talk about a bus interchange at Manukau – to complement the rail station – in recent months and years, but not much detail. It seems that behind the scenes quite a lot of work has been going on to sort out the details, and at the Council’s Auckland Plan committee meeting this coming Tuesday, important steps to making the interchange a reality will be taken. A report on the interchange highlights the progress that has been made in terms of developing a master plan for “Lot 59″ – the site it will be built on.

The interchange is to be located on the site that’s currently a surface level parking lot (like most of Manukau) between the new train station and the main Council building. This is shown in the map below:
This is a good location for the interchange because it will act as a useful “bridge” linking MIT and the train station with the shopping centre and the current “heart” of Manukau city centre further to the east.  It is a pity that the former Manukau City Council couldn’t stump up with a little bit of extra money to have extended the rail line through to this site – but perhaps the bus interchange will go some way to gloss over that past mistake, especially if it brings new development with it: Essentially moving the centre towards the new transport infrastructure that is its best hope of adding vitality to this poorly conceived place.

So it’s great to see that looking in a bit closer we can see that the plan clearly isn’t to just build a bus interchange on the site – but for that interchange to be part of a broader redevelopment of what is a fairly key cornerstone site for the whole of Manukau City:

It looks like the goal is to turn Putney Way – the street on the northern side of the site – into something resembling a shared space. This is excellent as it would reinforce Putney Way as the key retail pedestrian focused street within Manukau City and give the centre something of an east/west spine. Slowly looks like Manukau City could at last develop some real place quality.

Careful phasing of the traffic signals at the northwest corner of the site will be important to enable easy bus-train transfers, as well as making sure we don’t repeat the mistakes of the Newmarket train station and effectively hide the bus interchange behind a row of shops.

Clearly visible above is that the more compact ‘sawtooth’ station layout has been selected for this site. This certainly makes for a concentrated and therefore highly legible place to find your bus, but because of the need for buses to reverse out to continue their routes it does add an inefficient time delay to each service. This is a design typology that is generally more appropriate to inter-city terminus type stations rather than intra-city through routing stations. Below is the Manukau City section of the New Network, clearly showing the through routing of the  services that will use the station.

Source: Transport Blog


If you read the full Transport Blog post on the interchange reaction to what was drawn up drew a mainly negative response especially to the sawtooth design. I also gave a negative reaction towards the concept drawings Auckland Transport drew up as well in a subsequent post.


Incorporating Manukau Interchange Mk2 and Te Papa North together

With both the AT and Government/Council respective projects in the concept stages and both getting negative comments one way or the other (either location or it being impractical and underwhelming)  (although positive for the initial ideas), I had a brain storm over how to eliminate the negative and enhance the positive attributes of both projects.

Enter my Manukau Redevelopment Mk2 work that you can see here (as of August): Update on Manukau Interchange.

What I have done to bring the redevelopment into its Mk3 stage (the most current stage as of now) was to bring Te Papa North over into the complex mock-up that I produced in the Mk2 version and add some more refining pieces to give a bit more detail. That said I am a macro-urban designer not a micro-urban designer. Meaning I work on the large-scale stuff and prefer to leave the fine detail someone more equipped and experienced than I am. That is why you don’t see things like trees, benches and street-lighting. However, I won’t particularly mind going into partnership with a micro specialist to give the mock-up some life.


Here is the Manukau Interchange Redevelopment Mk3


  • Complex occupies entire existing Council car-park site (1.77 hectares)
  • Mix of Commercial Office, Commercial Service (retail and hospitality), Residential and the Te Papa North Facility
  • Underground car parking provided
  • Bus interchange built in on Putney Way. Capacity for between 10-22 buses depending on layout and use)
  • Green Space and Plazas provided with Plazas covered by archway glass giving the arcade effect
  • Arcade corridor provided that allows thoroughfare pedestrian traffic and also housing retail/hospitality facilities
  • Te Papa North Facility on large block opposite MIT building
  • 18 storey resident apartment tower on north-eastern side opposite Manukau Civic Complex
  • Utility access provided from Manukau Station Road

The Mk3 Redevelopment is part of a wider Manukau (Super) Metropolitan Centre renewal project I am drawing up currently which includes downgrade the pro-car street-scape into a more people friendly “street”-scape and utilising the land better than what it is now.


The Mk3 work and the wider M(S)MC work will hopefully be presented to the Council Urban/Rural Development Committee on November 28. Lets try for something that is not underwhelming but bold, and something that is also affordable as the proposal calls for private-sector led development over public-sector led development.


More on the Manukau Interchange Mk3 Development on Monday 

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4 thoughts on “Manukau Interchange Redevelopment Mk3 – and Incorporating Te Papa North

  1. Nice work Ben. Now we just need to tie Rainbows End into the centre as such. There is a 4 lane arterial creating a major divide.

      1. Working on that now with the old fashioned method of pencil, eraser and tracing paper before going to SketchUp.

        Manukau Station Road won’t be particularly easy as it is a main feeder through the area. For the rest though nothing plaza’s and good shared spaces won’t fix to stitch the rest of Manukau City Centre up

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