The Ripple – New Zealand

Mt Albert Design CompetitionMt Albert Baptist Church Auckland. Design Competition Winning Concept: The Ripple.

The thematic centrality of the winning design is the idea of the ripple, acknowledging the church as an epicentre of influence on its community.

The strength of the concept reflects the church’s DNA, how it desires to impact its environment through teaching and compassion. During the early stages, the design team researched and workshopped the relevant cultural sensitivities to ensure connectivity with Maori, Chinese, and Anglo cultures. The Maori idea of a Marae Meeting Place is referenced in a dramatic curved awning hovering over an Arrival Court and Pool. The Arrival Pool is key in drawing together the ripple concept and key in reflecting a fundamental element for a Baptist Church.

All the spaces focus and radiate from the Arrival Pool including the Forecourt, the Atrium/Foyer, an intimate Chapel, a 600 seat Church Auditorium, The Kids and Youth Centre, an Administration zone, and a Preschool. Integral with the concept is the proposed landscape design reinforcing the ripple concept with circular banding radiating through the hard and soft landscape, and significantly the use of gabion wall terracing reflects the Maori terracing found on nearby Mt Albert itself.

Andrew Duffin will lead the NBRS+PARTNERS team working closely with Mt Albert Baptist Church to fulfil a purpose designed, inspiring, connected outcome.


NBRS+PARTNERS is a people focused, research based studio that aims to enrich lives. By developing creative design partnerships our portfolio spanning public and private sectors exhibit an understanding of the people whose lives will be affected. Above all NBRS seeks to design environments that will have positive life changing affect. Architecture is the cornerstone of NBRS+PARTNERS global interdisciplinary design practice with expertise in Architecture, Heritage, Interiors, Urban Planning, Landscape Architecture, ESD and Research. Since 1968, NBRS has developed a research led international architecture practice based in Sydney Australia. NBRS is recognised for its innovative, award-winning design excellence and comprehensive expertise. Our design-minded, 50 strong team’s unique focus on creative partnerships helps to realise solutions, with extraordinary results.

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