We created dwellings for Nga Potiki to promote enjoyment of their land.

Papamoa, Bay of Plenty

The project

Mangatawa is a sacred hill of the Nga Potiki people. It is part of the oral history of Nga Potiki that a whale and her baby swam into Tauranga Harbour and stopped on the eastern shore of the Rangataua Arm to drink from a magic spring.

As the mother and baby turned to stone the father whale entered the harbour in search of his family. On seeing their plight he too drank from the stream and joined them. He is known as Kopukairoa, the baby is Hikurangi and the mother is Mangatawa.

Together they form the back drop to Papamoa and it is on the lower slopes of Mangatawa that the Marae is placed.

The Mangatawa vision is to allow whanau to enjoy maximum benefit as shareholders. Establishing a papakainga is one part of the vision.

The design

We have completed a master plan for 30 dwellings, the first stage of which are ten kaumatua houses.

The kaumatua units are located in close proximity to the marae and on traditional Maori land so that residents can enjoy the full benefits of this cultural landscape. These lie on the northern slope overlooking the Pacific to Tuhua and Mauao.

The houses comprise two bedrooms and each is designed to not only accommodate a single occupant but also allow family members to stay from time to time. Indoor and outdoor living space accommodate larger family group occasions.

We are proud to have received the New Zealand Architecture Waikato Bay of Plenty Architecture Award in Housing for this project in 2012.


Key details


Mangatawa Papakainga Housing
Mangatawa Papamoa Blocks Inc.
Papamoa, Bay of Plenty
December 2011
Community, Living

Project team

Project Architect
Frank Cleary
Key Staff
Peter Hunt
Caroline Sui
Charlotte Rose