Tekapo Buildings

255-265 Stafford Street, Timaru

  • Tekapo Buildings, Timaru.
    Copyright: Heritage New Zealand. Taken By: M Woods. Date: 4/04/2018.
  • Tekapo Buildings, Timaru.
    Copyright: Heritage New Zealand. Taken By: M Woods. Date: 4/04/2018.
  • Tekapo Buildings, Timaru. February 1993. Image included in Field Record Form Collection.
    Copyright: Heritage New Zealand . Taken By: Pam Wilson.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 2 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 3163 Date Entered 23rd June 1983

Locationopen/close

Extent of List Entry

Extent includes the land described as Lot 1 DP 51265 (RT SRS CB28K/65), Canterbury Land District and the building known as Tekapo Buildings thereon.

City/District Council

Timaru District

Region

Canterbury Region

Legal description

Lot 1 DP 51265 (RT SRS CB28K/65), Canterbury Land District

Summaryopen/close

When completed in late 1925, the three-storeyed ferro-concrete commercial building known as Tekapo Buildings, located at 255-265 Stafford Street in central Timaru, was noted for its striking design by local architect, Herbert Hall. Tekapo Buildings makes a contribution to the streetscape and has aesthetic, architectural and historical value.

Tekapo Buildings was constructed during a busy period of commercial construction activity in the Timaru Central Business District. A newspaper report celebrating the opening of the Tekapo Buildings in early 1926 noted that it was named after Lake Tekapo in the Mackenzie District and was the first Timaru building to be flood-lit from the outside. The report described the building as being divided into five shops, with the second and third floors being used as offices, these being accessed by an electric elevator. The basement contained both lift machinery and heating plant for the building’s radiators.

Tekapo Buildings stands on the north-east side of Stafford Street in the middle of a block north of Strathallan Street, Timaru. Constructed of brick, ferro-concrete and plaster, the building is Italianate in style with Ionic columns, rusticated corners and dentilled cornice. It is well-crafted and does not appear to have dramatically altered since its construction. The main change on the exterior is at ground floor level where most of the shop fronts appear to be modern. The cantilever verandah appears to be original, supported by a rod from the base of each of the columns on the first floor. The architect for Tekapo Buildings, Herbert Hall (1880-1939), designed a number of public and domestic buildings throughout Timaru and the surrounding districts in the early part of the twentieth century. These included the Carnegie Library at Fairlie (1914) and the South Canterbury War Memorial in Timaru (1925). One of his most notable buildings was the neo-Georgian Chateau Tongariro (1928-9), erected on Mount Ruapehu in the North Island.

Early businesses and organisations operating out of the building included a photographer’s studio on the top floor, chiropractic clinic, Plunket Society rooms, fruiterer and confectioner and shoe shop. Nowadays, the ground floor continues to operate as retail, with offices on the floors above.

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Construction Professionalsopen/close

Hall, Herbert W

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

W J Harding

No biography is currently available for this construction professional

Additional informationopen/close

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1925 -

Completion Date

21st February 2019

Report Written By

Robyn Burgess

Other Information

A fully referenced upgrade report is available on request from the Canterbury/West Coast Office of Heritage New Zealand.

Please note that entry on the New Zealand Heritage List/Rarangi Korero identifies only the heritage values of the property concerned, and should not be construed as advice on the state of the property, or as a comment of its soundness or safety, including in regard to earthquake risk, safety in the event of fire, or insanitary conditions.