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Designing for change


Is it possible to design a family home today that will stay in synch with changing needs through future years? Craig South, of South Architects, believes it can be done provided evolving family dynamics are carefully considered in the design process

It has long been the norm in New Zealand to move house or build anew when embarking on a new chapter in life, such as starting a family or entering retirement

Yet moving somewhere new every time life changes is Read more

Architecture adapting in uncertain times


Through these past few challenging months, ‘home’ has been at the centre of our ‘bubble’ lifestyles Ways of living and working have altered, with the experience also influencing thinking on home design Craig South, of South Architects, suggests good architecture will continue to add value in today’s fast changing world

As New Zealanders, we have all played our part in responding to an unprecedented event and borne the impacts of it We have all had to find our own solutions As business owners we Read more

Distance no barrier to achieving inspiring architecture


Whether planning a new home in Canterbury or further afield, a consistent quality design process should be achievable Architect Craig South suggests distance need not present any impediment to success

Given all the advantages of connectivity in today’s world, overcoming distance to achieve great architecture is a challenge that architects can readily embrace provided they have the right client-focussed systems and practices in place

At South, we approach each new project with the same high level of care and attention We are committed to ensuring Read more

Summer of discovery in Ōtautahi Christchurch


Our urban city centre is becoming a vibrant, interesting place As you prepare for the summer break, architect Craig South recommends including Christchurch in your plans

If you haven’t visited the central city for a while, I’d suggest making some time over summer to go and explore it You’ll find a lot has changed, mostly for the better with so many new buildings and developments up and running

A Read more

Real lives behind the architecture


From the outside, the practice of architecture may seem a little formal Architect Craig South says greater openness can change perceptions and promote positive outcomes

When I first started out in this industry more than 20 years ago, I’m sure I would have thought that creative skills alone held the key to great design In fact, as I’ve discovered, it invariably evolves out of building good relationships with clients, spending time with them on-site and getting to know their lifestyle and aspirations You really can’t do that effectively without Read more

Opening new doors on city living


Buyers seeking a newly built city apartment will find plenty on the market But what if people want something else, more connected and affordable? Architect Craig South explores what this ‘something else’ could look like and how it could transform how we live

Recently I was invited to contribute to a New Zealand Institute of Architects’ meeting on the subject of emerging trends in city living As one of the speakers, I was pleased to give a talk on co-housing and the work our practice has been doing in this

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Architectural forum attracts positive response


South Architects’ initiative ArchiChat is resonating strongly with people who share their passion for design and the architectural process As Architect Craig South reports, the latest two-way forum sparked constructive discussion on how  people like to live and holiday

Having launched our ArchiChat Group earlier this year, it is exciting for us to see interest growing in this interactive social forum that we set up for people wanting to learn more about architecture and what architects do

As well as giving people an opportunity to explore the practice of contemporary

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Bringing people together to talk Architecture


South Architects’ opened an exciting conversation on architecture with the wider community earlier this year via their new ArchiChat Group Architect Craig South explains what the open forum is all about and why it is going from strength to strength

It has been a privilege for us to open our practice this year and welcome those with a passion for design and the architectural process to join our ArchiChat Group get-togethers Sharing a room with people from all walks of life who are genuinely interested in what we do

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Breaking down myths about Architects


Misconceptions about architects and how they work can be off-putting for those weighing up whether to use their services In reality, as architect Craig South observes, there is nothing to fear and much to be gained from engaging a registered professional

It can be easy to forget that people outside your own profession may not have a great understanding of what it is you actually do Buildings are integral to our lives, yet the role of the architect is not necessarily clear to everyone In our practice, it is refreshing

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Designing for Community


City housing initiatives that promote a sense of community are sparking growing interest As architect Craig South explains, such housing developments can take many different forms

Earlier this year, we launched our ArchiChat Group to provide an informal way for people to meet us and share our love of architecture It has generated a lot of lively conversation, especially around the topic of community-based housing

Many find the idea really appealing because it connects with the New Zealand dream of small friendly neighbourhoods where children can play and grow up feeling

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You & Your Architect – a Creative Partnership


Every person is unique As architect Craig South explains, your home should also uniquely reflect who you are and how you want to live

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Responding creatively to Design Guidelines


Meeting design guidelines for particular sites is a must, but architect Craig South argues there is still plenty of room for creative interpretation

When making a big investment in a new home, it can be very reassuring knowing there are design rules in place to protect that investment Yet if these rules are followed conservatively, the results can be pretty bland and uninspiring and that may not be desirable from a long-term investment perspective A creative approach will more likely produce something memorable that will hold its value and reflect

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Balancing Architecture with Interior Design


Rather than treating interior design as a finishing touch, architect Craig South suggests a collaborative approach can be much more effective

Architects and interior designers have traditionally tended to work apart but, in my experience, it’s far better to have both on the same page and working together from an early stage Having a shared design vision is the best guarantee of an inspiring outcome

There may be a perception that the architect’s job stops at the front door, yet more often than not external form flows through to the interior

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Welcome to the Waterfront


Christchurch’s new city waterfront is transforming how people engage with the city and Te Papa Ōtakaro/Avon River Architect Craig South explores this exciting addition to the central city

It was a day for celebration and discovery when Christchurch’s new City Promenade opened on 25 November with a scavenger hunt, live music, face painting and eel feeding
A few weeks before the official opening I was lucky enough to be invited on a tour of the new waterfront on the north side of Te Papa Ōtakaro/Avon River between Christchurch Hospital and Manchester

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A positive way forward


Architect Craig South suggests a new campaign promoting Christchurch’s spirit of exploration is a good fit with the city’s past and its current culture of innovation

Christchurch has come a long way since the earthquakes, but we have yet to attract enough people to the city to get it really humming

Not everyone will agree on how this is to be done, but ChristchurchNZ has certainly front footed the challenge this month by launching a new promotional campaign Called The Christchurch Story, it invites newcomers ‘to explore the opportunity’ available in

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Embracing our accessible city


Architect Craig South takes a look at how Christchurch’s growing cycle and pedestrian infrastructure is poised to transform the city’s future

Part of the vision for the Christchurch rebuild was to create a city that would be safer, cleaner and easier to access Most Cantabrians agree with that in principle, while still commuting to work every day in private motor vehicles that pollute the environment and clog up roads Maybe it’s time to rethink how we travel in and out of the city

I’m optimistic this will happen as people begin

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Protecting your home investment


In the wake of another big building firm collapse, architect Craig South offers insights on safeguarding your home for the future

For those preparing to make one of the biggest investments of their lives, building a new home, it must be terrifying to read about the failures of building companies which go into receivership on a regular basis

How do you protect yourself against this kind of risk and other potential perils when planning for your future nest?

Investing in a new home is such a huge undertaking Many people will only

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Puzzle turning to promise in central city


Architect Craig South reviews progress on the Christchurch rebuild and finds a city on the cusp of an exciting future

Christchurch has waited six years for the 100 day blueprint to come off the plan and deliver on its promise, but the new CBD revealed in that blueprint is now moving much closer

The plan laid out by the Christchurch Central Development Unit (CCDU) in 2012 was a bold one, based on a vision of the city’s future produced by the Christchurch City Council in consultation with the public through the

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Enduring Architecture


Architect Craig South explores the positive impact quality, well-considered design can have on a family’s future

After recently catching up with clients who are still living in their home 10 years after it was designed, the importance of well-considered design was abundantly clear When we were designing the Brown House, all those years ago, they were a young family with two small boys and another on the way, they had never built before and didn’t have a clear picture of what they wanted But they knew how they wanted to

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A New Approach To An Old Problem


Architect Craig South explores an alternative to the norm when it comes to central city living

Architecture is typically viewed as a whole – the exterior lines, the internal layout and the fit-out And while it is all of that, if we were to strip it back to a considered shell, we have what is known as Naked Architecture A term being used overseas to describe buildings that are being designed and built with no preconceived ideas around their internal layout and use Buildings that the end-user is able to

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