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EA Networks Centre in Ashburton

01 Oct 2015

Warren and Mahoney Architects has taken home the 2015 Supreme Concrete3 Sustainability Award for the EA Networks Centre in Ashburton, a multi-purpose indoor sports and aquatics complex that reflects the region’s commitment to leisure and community facilities.

The Award, presented at the annual New Zealand Concrete Conference in Rotorua on Friday 09 October, celebrated concrete’s role in realising the Centre’s simple concept of a single linear space - housing stadium at one end and aquatic facilities at the other - to provide a cost-effective and resilient solution, says Cement & Concrete Association (CCANZ) chief executive Rob Gaimster.

The judging panel applauded Warren and Mahoney Architects’ use of concrete to achieve durable permanence, thermal efficiency, an attractive aesthetic as well as space flexibility in this large community facility that serves the wider Mid Canterbury region.

The judges acknowledged the use of locally sourced greywacke aggregate by Ashburton based precast concrete company McIntosh Precast to ensure the building considered social sustainability values, as well as addressing environmentally sustainable design principles.

Concrete's thermal mass is exposed in the entrance foyer as part of an overall passive solar thermal strategy, which also utilises insulated concrete wall panels in the front of house area to help moderate temperature variations.

Concrete panels and columns continue through the swimming pool hall to reduce maintenance, while the braided river design cast into the concrete exterior echoes the surrounding landscape to stunning effect.

The EA Networks Centre is no doubt already a much treasured addition to Ashburton’s built environment, one that proudly embodies the principles of sustainable concrete construction.

 Images: David Higgins Photography.