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A new visitor centre for Te Urewera will mark a new beginning for Tuhoe, says Te Urewera Board chairman Tamati Kruger.
 
The Wharehou will replace the Aniwaniwa Visitor Centre, which is earmarked for demolition, having closed in 2008 after being deemed unsafe.
 
However, the New Zealand Institute of Architects is appealing for a reprieve for the 40-year-old building on heritage grounds.
 
Mr Kruger said he understood the institute's viewpoint, but he had to champion the interests of Tuhoe.
 
The building of a new visitor centre on the shores of Lake Waikaremoana follows the Treaty of Waitangi settlement between Tuhoe and the Crown in 2014.
 
Under the settlement, Urewera National Park was disestablished and administration of the land passed to the Te Urewera Board, which comprises Tuhoe and crown representatives.
 
"The new building is a new beginning for us and manifests new relationships, not only with the New Zealand public but with the Department of Conservation as well, because there is no longer a national park," Mr Kruger said.
 
"It's a whole new ball game, really."
 
He said that, when the Aniwaniwa centre was opened in 1976, Tuhoe were not invited to be part of the official ceremony.
 
"The existence of that building reminded Tuhoe people that they no longer had a place in their own homeland," he said.
 
But Mr Kruger also said Tuhoe and project partner DOC recognised heritage value and the plan all along had been to salvage the native timber in the old building and reuse it.
 
Institute of Architects president Christina van Bohemen, arguing for Aniwaniwa to be saved, said it was designed by pioneer Maori architect John Scott, whose work was increasingly recognised.
 
Ms van Bohemen said DOC deputy director-general Mervyn English, who made the decision on the demolition, was using the department's failure to maintain the building as justification for its destruction.
 
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A new visitor centre for Te Urewera will mark a new beginning for Tuhoe, says Te Urewera Board chairman Tamati Kruger.   The Wharehou will replace the Aniwaniwa Visitor Centre, which is earmarked for demolition, having closed in 2008 after being deemed unsafe.   However, the New Zealand Institute of Architects is appealing for a reprieve for the 40-year-old building on heritage grounds.   Mr Kruger said...

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Whakatāne District Council advises that the following road will be closed to ordinary vehicular traffic for the purpose of the MotorSport Bay of Plenty Inc - Hill Climb Challenge event. 

Matahī Road closed from the intersection at SH30 to 580 Matahī Rd Saturday 27 Aug 2016 9am-5pm.

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Whakatāne District Council advises that the following road will be closed to ordinary vehicular traffic for the purpose of the MotorSport Bay of Plenty Inc - Hill Climb Challenge event.  Matahī Road closed from the intersection at SH30 to 580 Matahī Rd Saturday 27 Aug 2016...

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A 40-year-old visitor centre earmarked for demolition in Te Urewera National Park is a unique and increasingly recognised building that deserves to be saved, architects say.
 
The New Zealand Institute of Architects is appealing for a reprieve for the 1976 Aniwaniwa Visitor Centre.
 
The building, which was commissioned by the Department of Conservation, was designed by John Scott, a pioneer Maori architect whose work is increasingly recognised, according to Institute of Architects president Christina van Bohemen.
 
"Aniwaniwa is a unique building designed by a unique architect for a unique place," she said.
 
"It strongly expresses some of the defining characteristics of John Scott's architecture: concern for the land, a sensitive approach to site, and an innovative fusion of modern architecture and Maori building and design traditions."
 
Ms van Bohemen said DOC Deputy Director-General Mervyn English, who made the decision on the demolition, was using the department's failure to maintain the building as justification for its destruction.
 
Poor conditions have been cited as the reason.
 
"If there is a will, there are ways to restore Aniwaniwa and find a use for it," Ms Bohemen said.
 
"It is always disappointing when government agencies fail to protect the national legacy, but it is unforgivable when they actively promote its destruction."
 
DOC was not immediately able to respond to the criticism.
 
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A 40-year-old visitor centre earmarked for demolition in Te Urewera National Park is a unique and increasingly recognised building that deserves to be saved, architects say.   The New Zealand Institute of Architects is appealing for a reprieve for the 1976 Aniwaniwa Visitor Centre.   The building, which was commissioned by the Department of Conservation, was designed by John Scott, a pioneer Maori architect whose...

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Architects around the country are fighting to save a significant building in Te Urewera from the wrecker's ball.
 
The Institute of Architects said it was dismayed by the Department of Conservation (DoC)'s decision to demolish the Āniwaniwa Visitor Centre.
 
The building was designed by the late John Scott, who also designed the Futuna Chapel in Wellington, which is held up as one of the 
 
finest examples of modernist New Zealand architecture.
 
A spokesperson for the institute said the visitor centre next to Lake Waikaremoana was likewise an important piece of architecture.
 
The government was abdicating its responsibility to preserve the nation's heritage by allowing it to be demolished, the spokesperson said.
 
The centre was built in 1976 and was condemned as unsafe seven years ago because of leaks.
 
Hawke's Bay architect Graham Linwood said DoC could have saved the visitor centre if it had wanted to.
 
"For one, they've let the building deteriorate without doing any maintenance - buildings don't exist without maintenance.
 
"Whether it's been done on purpose, we would suggest that it has, or whether it's just the fact that it's been neglected and unloved."
 
The department believed it would cost $3 million to repair but it could be done for a tenth of that, he said.
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Architects around the country are fighting to save a significant building in Te Urewera from the wrecker's ball.   The Institute of Architects said it was dismayed by the Department of Conservation (DoC)'s decision to demolish the Āniwaniwa Visitor Centre.   The building was designed by the late John Scott, who also designed the Futuna Chapel in Wellington, which is held up as one of...

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OWNERS of the Taneatua Liquor Store wanting to extend their business times by one hour will have their application heard today. Now, the store closes between 2pm and 4pm to avoid the hours when school children walk past the shop. The business opens again from 4pm until 7pm.

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OWNERS of the Taneatua Liquor Store wanting to extend their business times by one hour will have their application heard today. Now, the store closes between 2pm and 4pm to avoid the hours when school children walk past the shop. The business opens again from 4pm until...

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I climb to the summit of my mountain to see the lands of my ancestors.

Maungapohatu in its defying grace and strength holds me at my feet and the wealth of yesterday holds me in awe.

I see the wealth of our past stemming from the force that surges through legs of Tane Maahuta as he strains at the weight of Ranginui.

I see the wealth of our past, as it emanates from the beads of sweat that drench the forehead of Maui, as he heaves these lands to the surface.

I hear the wealth that entwines with the distant voice of Kupe as he commands his men to paddle onwards into the vastness of the unknown.

I see the wealth of yesterday cupped in the palm of Hone Heke Pakai as he outstretches into the handshake that births our nation.

I see the flag of Tutakangahau soaring with strength, with the wealth of our past woven in its very fabric — “kotahi te ture mo nga iwi e rua” it screams to the sky — acknowledging our failures and foreshadowing the prosperity of our future.

It is this wealth that I see bellowing through the waters of the Okahu, surging beyond the Whirinaki, and reaching the roaring waters of the Rangitaiki, outpouring into the heart of Tangaroa.

And as a lone Maori boy says a karakia to Tangaroa himself and he begins to devour the fish from his evening catch, I see the wealth of our past in him.

A wealth that is bestowed upon him and all Maori from birth. Our first breaths fall in sync with the frequency of a new wave and our hearts beat for the first time as a stray ripple rises to the surface of our distant awa, for water is the giver of life, yet it is also the ageless kete that holds the wealth of yesterday.

Thus when our people come into existence, it is our people that are our wealth.

Wealth in language, history and culture

It is our people that act as the bank of our greatest riches — enclosing the wealth that is our language, our history and our culture. We as a people have strived to immortalise the wealth of the past, for the use of today.

For it is our people who have acknowledged both the triumph and oppression of yesterday and united, fought for the growth of our successes, and battled against our injustices. It is our people that have embraced our native tongue and customs, and aided the rise of educational institutions, organisations and events that operate in accordance to the true nature of Maoritanga.

It is our people who have continued to be at one with the whenua and have forced those in higher positions to recognise the connection between Maori and land — which acts as an umbilical cord throughout the duration of our time on this earth.

It is we as a people that have strengthened, uplifted and globalised our culture, and in turn have enabled ourselves the opportunity to increase the wealth within us all.

Yet although fortunes flourish at our feet, it seems that somewhere along the way, some of us became clumsy with our possessions — dropping the loose notes of our language, selling off the knowledge of our past and gambling the revenues of our own culture.

As although our people are our wealth, our people can also be our poverty. The negative statistics of Maori paint a picture of us that is highly stigmatised and looked down upon in society. Therefore, in turn we are not only born inherited with the wealth of our past, but with the poverty of today.

We take our first breath, the wave reaches its crest, we fall into the predesigned mould of society, the wave falls to its trough.

We are born with a choice — to carry wealth, or to carry poverty.

But you see, we are no longer demigods, we are no longer chiefs and we are no longer in the past. Our awa still thrive and roar with the wealth of a time long ago, yet we are bound by prison cells, shackled by benefits and stained by statistics — so how can my people see themselves as wealthy, if we are told that what makes us rich, is what causes us poverty?

We must regain our misted wealth and let it cause the dew of a new day upon our people.

With our vision set on the past and our direction being tomorrow, we shall salvage the wealth that resonates within our people and act to change the idea of poverty that wavers the sails of many.

For I will climb to the summit of my mountain to see the lands of my descendants, Maungapohatu will embrace my presence for the last time, yet I will see the bellowing waters of the Okahu — everlasting and eternally echoing that our people are our wealth.

Gisborne Herald

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Our people are our wealth

16 August 2016

I climb to the summit of my mountain to see the lands of my ancestors. Maungapohatu in its defying grace and strength holds me at my feet and the wealth of yesterday holds me in awe. I see the wealth of our past stemming from the force that surges through legs of Tane Maahuta as he strains at the weight of Ranginui. I see the wealth of our past, as it emanates from the beads of sweat that drench the forehead of Maui, as he heaves these lands...

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