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Company:NZ Strong Group
Project:Auckland Zoo South East Asia Project (Separable Portion 2A), Auckland
The project involved the complete redevelopment of the Zoo’s South East Asia Track, and Te Puna, a new restaurant and functions facility. This renewed ‘Heart of the Zoo’ creates state-of-the-art habitats, shelters and amenities to immerse visitors in a Sumatran jungle environment, reflecting best practice facilities that support positive animal welfare.
The project provided numerous challenges. It was technically demanding; the site covered two hectares within the centre of the Zoo, the design was incomplete and changed during construction, and there were multiple architects involved. Significant rock excavation was required (over 4,000m3) and visitor access needed to be maintained throughout, despite the site bisecting a main visitor route. As an eleventh-hour challenge was the bringing forward of the date for the Orangutans’ return, requiring the team to put on additional resource and work night shifts.
As Project Manager, Gareth overcame these challenges, working with a young team, whom he mentored. His design and project management skills, and significant knowledge of Auckland Zoo operations, proved invaluable and ensured the project’s success. His client said, “It is unfathomable to imagine this project being delivered successfully without his overarching commitment to excellence and his daily attention to communication, progress, and detail.”