Pehiāweri Marae papakāinga: a model for community regeneration in Te Tai Tokerau (Master's thesis)

Citation: Kake, B.J. (2015). Pehiāweri Marae papakāinga : a model for community regeneration in Te Tai Tokerau. Master’s thesis explanatory document. An unpublished explanatory document submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Architecture (Professional), Unitec Institute of Technology.

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This thesis by design explores the ways in which architecture can facilitate the reconnection of Māori people to their lands, and the resumption of ahi kā (or, a living presence). This project is based on the philosophy that housing solutions for Māori should be integrated with economic and social development initiatives that are co-created and co-designed with the community. Through this research, the papakāinga concept has been explored as a model for the cultural, social, economic and environmental regeneration of communities in Aotearoa New Zealand, and implemented through the design of a papakāinga project located at Pehiāweri Marae in Glenbervie, Whāngarei, Aotearoa New Zealand.

The disproportionate levels of housing deprivation experienced by Māori, when contrasted with the general population, is well-documented. Many Māori families have been effectively locked out of attaining home ownership (and the benefits of inter-generational equity) through conventional means, yet are unable to leverage their ownership interests in Māori land to secure home ownership. In addition to this, culturally-appropriate housing that is sensitive to Māori whānau dynamics and responsive to the relationship Māori have with their whenua is scarce. This research project seeks to address aspects of these complex issues within one specific housing project, and is timely given the current state of severe housing deprivation in Northland, and in the context of Ngāpuhi-nui-tonu moving towards settlement.

The theoretical component of the thesis has sought to bridge kaupapa Māori research and architectural investigation. The research has therefore been heavily process-oriented, with the view to developing and testing alternative design and research methods for working with Māori communities. Applied design/research methods have included recording of oral histories and cultural mapping to inform design strategies that reflect the culture and history of the community, and the use of wānanga and participatory design techniques to meaningfully engage the community in the design process. In this process the role of the architect is reframed as skilled facilitator and interpreter, drawing upon their technical social, and cultural expertise to empower people to take a pivotal role in the design of their own communities through participatory processes.

The design component of this project has culminated in the development of a 10 year masterplan for Pehiāweri Marae, and the design of an 8 unit + communal facilities papakāinga. A number of issues and opportunities have emerged through the development of the masterplan, including the potential reorientation of the wharehui, and siting of future planned projects, including a kohanga reo, playgrounds, and a whare pora. The papakāinga development includes a mix of 1, 2 and 4 bedroom units arranged in clusters of 2-3 dwellings, which have been designed for flexibility and with the ability to be configured as intergenerational whānau homes, or separate dwellings as needs change over time. The papakāinga also includes additional communal facilities that will support interdependence and community resilience whilst retaining a balance between private, shared and communal spaces. I hope that this research will also be of use to other Māori landowners in realising their own housing aspirations, both in Te Tai Tokerau and around the motu.

Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori Subject Headings): 
PapakāingaKaupapa rangahauRangahau MāoriWhare noho

Pehiāweri Marae (Glenbervie, Whangarei, N.Z.), Ngāti Hau hapū, Glenbervie (Whangarei, N.Z.), Whangarei (N.Z.), Māori housing, Māori community settlements, community development, research methodology, tribal settlement, Ngā Puhi iwi

ANZSRC Field of Research: 
120101 Architectural Design, 120501 Community Planning

Austin, Michael; Hoskins, Raoul