The Viaduct

The new architecture in the Wynyard Quarter (it’s made of Wyn!) is fascinating, although unfortunately it strongly reminds me of Wellington’s Sesqui 1990. Several formerly isolated parts of the waterfront have been connected together, and all it’s missing is a stadium. The numerous high-class eateries were stuffed with people* taking long Friday lunches, and I kept wondering “who’s doing all the work?”

Nothing is quite finished, although it’s very tidy and full of curious residents. There’s an undeniable quantity of wealth on display, and although it’s not ostentatious, I wouldn’t want to have to justify this public spending to someone from Christchurch. After walking over a bridge and through a tasteful Maori tomokanga (absolutely the only sign of Maori people or culture in the area) there’s a variety of pavilions and ambiguous centres to pass, as well as a fountain and fancy customised playground -nothing out of a box for these children, let’s sculpt something themed out of fibreglass!

There’s an embarrassing number of high-concept nautical sculptures made by artists who have never been to sea in their lives, such as shiny funnels and oversized deck chairs, and in the hot Auckland sun it becomes something of an arty death march. I hope it isn’t deserted by November.

*Rich white middle-aged people, that is. There seems to be a factory somewhere in Auckland which pumps them out.

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