2 Gunton Drive,
MSC Consulting Group
Woodhams Meikle Zhan
Norman Disney & Young
Big box retail doesn’t come any bigger than the new $80m International Wholesale superstore built by Haydn & Rollett on Auckland’s northwest fringe. Covering a 2.76 hectare site at Westgate with 14,000 square metres of retail space under an eight-metre high roof, along with two suspended carparks totalling 811 parking spaces, it is prodigious both in sheer physical size and the variety of products on offer. The US-based multinational that claims to be the world’s second largest retailer after Walmart, sells everything from fresh groceries to eyewear, petrol and coffins, and it doesn’t hold back on any of it. Even the trollies are rated to one metric tonne.
As a result, everything about this project was supersized. The lifts, for instance, are as heavy duty as they come and the travelators are possibly New Zealand’s longest. Haydn & Rollett had a dozen supervisors overseeing the project, and the entire team, including subcontactors, hovered at somewhere between 150 and 160 bodies on site throughout the two year build.
All of which would have been more than enough to manage in perfect working conditions, but this project had additional challenges, including tricky ground conditions, confined site access – there was just one road frontage and a single gate for everything arriving and leaving – as well as wetlands on three sides. The response to the first issue involved extensive ground engineering and the use of an unusually high number of rigid inclusion piles and pile production – at one stage, Haydn & Rollett had four piling machines working simultaneously. The presence of wetlands, meanwhile, required a thorough environmental plan and the re-homing of wildlife from areas cleared, as well as the creation of a planted transition zone between hard surfaces and the natural surroundings.
The last challenge was a human one. As a result of pandemic restrictions, the client’s team wasn’t able to get into New Zealand to view the project until near the very end, a situation that required plenty of trust from both parties.
2023 Property Council NZ - Retail Property, Merit