The Request for Proposal (RFP) for the construction of the HUNDERTWASSER ART CENTRE with Wairau Māori Art Gallery has now closed and the review process is underway. The formal Request for Proposal closed on Friday, February 9th with all proposals received from local firms.

A specially-formed HAC construction proposal evaluation team will now review all applications with the announcement of a construction partner expected in March. The evaluation team includes Mike Geale, newly appointed to assist in this phase of the project by the Whangarei Art Museum Trust. Mr Geale comes with decades of large-project construction experience; most recently as project and development director for Britomart and ASB Waterfront Theatre in Auckland.

The intensive evaluation period will see each proposal carefully assessed across a wide range of attributes and is anticipated to take all of February. Building consent is expected to be issued by Whangarei District Council around the same time. Construction plans are currently going through the final stages of the building consent process, including multiple peer reviews as requested by the council.

Anyone who would like to know more about the project or become involved in some way can visit the recently re-opened Hundertwasser HQ at The Hub Information Centre, Town Basin between 10am-4pm, Monday-Sunday. The new HQ location allows the HAC project team to serve updated information to visitors in a much closer proximity than previously possible. HQ re-opened in November with an art auction in which all 38 pieces were sold, bringing in almost $30,000. Since then, visitor numbers and interest in the project continue to grow.

The HAC project group has also launched a new site where limited edition, high-quality prints by some of New Zealand’s top artists are available for purchase. Artwork on sale include prints from Emily Karaka, Billy Apple and Dick Frizzell as well as Tony Ogle and Michael Smither, whose works showcase classic local beach scenes. All proceeds from the sale of these pieces will go towards the HUNDERTWASSER ART CENTRE with Wairau Māori Art Gallery