At 5,300m², this two-storey complex borders Invercargill’s CBD. Built for Kmart and housing eight other tenants, it includes a 147 vehicle carpark and striking, 9m glazed windows.
Auckland-based development company Windermere Holdings spearheaded the much-anticipated opening of the Kmart complex in Invercargill. From the onset, Windermere sought a suitable site near Invercargill's CBD on which to build. After negotiations with the city council, a tract of land bordering Forth, Liddel and Wood Streets was purchased for the project.
Due to its relatively small size (5,300m²), the complex was initially planned as a two-storey build. Car parks were situated on the ground floor, while Kmart, along with other tenants of the complex, occupied the first level.
Windermere approached us as their preferred Design Build partner and contractor for the project, handing over a rough hand-drawn sketch to our design team. They were also the ones to turn what Windermere envisioned into a final structure.
The design itself needed to accommodate the lay of the land and, more particularly, a waterway, which would abut the site. In conjunction with an outside engineering consultancy, our design team came up with the idea of using a precast concrete seawall solution. The design solution would be used on a retaining wall, which figured prominently into the structure's final design. Since Kmart was the key tenant, we were careful to take elements of their brand and incorporate them into the final look. This look included using painted, precast concrete and coloured PIR insulated panels to match Kmart's colour scheme.
The complex includes Kmart and eight other tenants, making for a unique indoor mall experience. Once the design was finalised, it was determined that three of the satellite tenants would be located on the first level. The remaining five were situated on the ground level, adjacent to an undercover car park capable of holding 147 vehicles.
The look and feel of the completed project are bold and striking, with a 9m tall glazed section, sat at one of the complex's corners, making for a spacious and well-lit atrium-style entrance. On the first level, where Kmart is situated, the decision was made to defer having a dropped ceiling instead of leaving it open to a vaulted roof showing. Overall, the complex has an impressive presence — as a local retail manager for Kmart remarked, "it's our best looking store in NZ".