Work on Wellington City Mission’s future community hub has begun, with Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson kicking off the demolition in a digger.
The charitable trust has been based in Newtown for 32 years, but in 2023 it will move to Oxford Terrace in Mt Cook.
On Thursday, Grant Robertson climbed into a digger and with the help of a professional, tore down the structure of an old sign hanging outside the commercial building.
* Wellington City Mission opens new transitional housing facility, Te Pā Pori
* Wellington City Mission opens ‘social’ supermarket, first of its kind in New Zealand
* Wellington man says 2020 is the best year of his life after getting a home and some help
* Wellington City Mission receives $10 million for new building with social supermarket and housing units
Mana whenua gifted the community hub the name Whakamaru, which means to shelter, safeguard and protect.
Whakamaru, which will cost up to $40m to build, will have a 120-seat community cafe, a social supermarket, and 35 housing units designed to accommodate and care for people experiencing chronic homelessness.
It will be open 24-hours a day and will also have a food distribution warehouse, kitchens, laundry services, public bathrooms and showers, and sacred space for people to pray. A medical centre, therapeutic creative studios and conference rooms are included also.
The housing units will take over the top three floors of the building, while the first two floors will have the community facilities.
Construction is expected to be complete by late January.
At Thursday’s launch, renderings of the building included these words: “Building a community where there is no ‘us and them’.”
Wellington City Missioner Murray Edridge said it would make a significant difference to the community.
“What the building represents and offers to the community is the opportunity to connect with itself and to serve those who are doing it harder,” he said.
“It had taken a long time to get here, so I’m excited for demolition to get under way.”
Robertson said Whakamaru would be a place where the community could build strength.
“It’s a place for people to stay, feel safe and warm and where they will have services where they can grow,” he said.
Robertson said he wanted Wellington to be the opposite of loneliness and Whakamaru would help with that – giving people a place to grow and be with others.
Wellington mayor Andy Foster said while the building plans looked amazing – it was not about the design.
“It’s about the ethos and kaupapa of the building,” he said. “This building has something for everyone and will be a fantastic part of the community going forward.”
This article first show on www.stuff.co.nz Source link Author MANDY TE on date 2021-10-14 05:51:41