Terrace of Shops

456-486 Queen Street, Auckland

  • Terrace of Shops, 456-486 Queen Street, Auckland. Image courtesy of www.flickr.com.
    Copyright: phil1066photography.com. Taken By: Phil Clark . Date: 27/11/2020.
  • Terrace of Shops, 456-486 Queen Street, Auckland. Image courtesy of www.flickr.com.
    Copyright: Phil Braithwaite. Taken By: PhilBee NZ - Phil Braithwaite. Date: 16/09/2011.
  • Terrace of Shops, 456-486 Queen Street, Auckland.
    Copyright: Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga.

List Entry Information

List Entry Status Listed List Entry Type Historic Place Category 1 Public Access Private/No Public Access
List Number 655 Date Entered 2nd July 1987 Date of Effect 2nd July 1987


City/District Council

Auckland Council


Auckland Council

Legal description

Pts 6 7 8 of Sec 37 City of Auckland

Assessment criteriaopen/close

Historical Significance or Value

The site has been owned by the Methodist Church since the 1840s and up until 1906 the Prince Albert Boys' and Girls' schools were housed there. The Boys' School building later became the Rembrandt Hotel at 490 Queen Street (now demolished). 460-466 Queen Street was built for Neville Newcomb in 1908 and was the first block in the complex. The shops have been a distinctive feature of this part of Queen Street for most of this century and the block still contains a number of interesting shops including the last surviving inner city grocery and a traditional bike shop.


Auckland's longest continuous row of early twentieth century shops which are still to a large degree intact and still in use as shop/dwelling units.

Architect designed terraces of shops are very rare in New Zealand and this group is one of the most distinguished and best preserved in the country. The buildings contribute to our understanding of the capabilities of two Auckland architects, T W May and Alexander Wiseman.


The shops are a prominent feature of the townscape with the attractive continuous fa├žade and stepped verandah visible from both a northerly and southerly direction along Queen Street and from Myers Park directly opposite.


Construction Professionalsopen/close

Wiseman, Alexander

Alexander Wiseman (1865-1915) - Articled to Edward Bartley 1881-85. Began practising as an architect in 1904. The Auckland Ferry building (classified 'B') is his best known work and shows he was an architect of considerable ability.

May, T W

An Auckland architect responsible for a number of residential and commercial buildings around the city including three 7 storey concrete warehouses for Arthur Yates and Co.

Designed Shop/Dwellings for the Terrace Shops, 456-486 Queen Street, Auckland in 1909.

Additional informationopen/close

Physical Description


A continuous row of 16 shops designed by at least two architects between 1908-1912. Although the individual blocks of shops in a row possess subtle variations in design, they all combine to form a single terrace, homogeneous in scale and appearance. The buildings incorporate Neo-Baroque, Georgian and Italianate features in their design illustrating the eclectic nature of Edwardian architecture. A series of convex verandahs form a stepped effect along the street frontage and help give the impression of one continuous building.


Cast iron verandah posts have been removed and alterations have been made to shop fronts. Otherwise the buildings are in remarkably good condition.

Notable Features

Stepped verandah and original pediments at the top of the facades. Also some original Edwardian shop fronts. Some original interiors as well.

Construction Dates

Original Construction
1912 -

Construction Details

Brick and plaster walls, corrugated iron roofs and shop verandahs.

Information Sources

Auckland City Council

Auckland City Council

Drawings for most of the shops on microfilm.

Other Information

This historic place was registered under the Historic Places Act 1980. This report includes the text from the original Building Classification Committee report considered by the NZHPT Board at the time of registration.

NZHPT Heritage Order (29 June 1989)

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.