Chinese community centre design : explanatory document aimed at creating a better Auckland City to live in by the hand of the community

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Zhu, Lijie
Author ORCID Profiles (clickable)
Master of Architecture (Professional)
Unitec Institute of Technology
Su, Bin
Moore, Cameron
Masters Thesis
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
Potters Park (Mt. Eden, Auckland, N.Z.)
Auckland (N.Z.)
community centres
Dominion Road (Auckland, N.Z.)
Chinese gardens
feng shui (风水)
ethnic precincts
community centre architecture
community engagement
New Zealand
ANZSRC Field of Research Code (2020)
Zhu, L. (2016). Chinese community centre design : explanatory document aimed at creating a better Auckland City to live in by the hand of the community. An unpublished research project submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the degree of Master of Architecture (Professional), Unitec Institute of Technology, New Zealand.
Auckland in New Zealand is one of the famous liveable cities in the world. However, the city also faces some challenges such as housing problems, a poor transport system, inadequate health services and little immigrant minority support. To create a better city, the City Council has the responsibility to address these problems. As members of the community, we also play an essential role in making our community a better place to live in. Thus, designing a community centre in Auckland is the focus of my project, aimed at creating a better city by the community’s hand. Also, in supporting the local Chinese minority immigrants, the design partly involves assisting the Chinese community in Auckland to solve some of their common problems such as depression among senior immigrants, mother language loss and the lack of cultural connection and activities. Specifically, the objectives the Chinese Community Centre are as follows:  Design for the communities regardless of their age and gender.  Create a public place that engages the community members to interact.  Unite the community members into a solid group that serves society.  Identify the common needs of Chinese immigrants and support the lives of minorities in Auckland.  Enhance the communication between local Kiwis and Chinese.  Enrich communities’ daily life experience.  Promote a positive and healthy lifestyle to the community To address these issues, some comprehensive research is used as a baseline. The related studies involved the pros and cons of Auckland City, the history and development of community centres worldwide and identifying the needs of the Auckland Chinese community. The design studies involved the seniors design, Feng Shui, traditional Chinese gardens core ideas and other strategic approaches. After conducting the research, several design trials (e.g. courtyard style, Chinese garden style and context-based style) were held in the pre-design stage, which explored the possibilities of developing the Chinese Community Centre designs in Auckland and analysing their merits and deficits. The design outcome is a Chinese Community Centre situated along Dominion Road, which can provide the people with different community services, entertainment, health facilities and cultural support. Inspired by the traditional Chinese garden, the architectural design is embellished with aesthetical considerations and traditional strategies such as view shifts, vision connection and penetration with a modern appeal. To conform to the local culture, the detailed design involves localized characteristics, images and patterns. Additionally, to provide a great space for outdoor activities, several amendments were proposed on the site for the communities to enjoy the various outdoor leisure, entertainment and other activities.
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