vorstermans architects wellington ambulance kapiti station

Wellington Free Ambulance Kapiti Station

A modern fit for purpose facility which was robust, warm and light.
Dial 111 on the Kapiti Coast and its Wellington Free Ambulance who responds. Our brief was to provide a modern fit for purpose facility which was robust, warm and light. The building needed strengthening to 100% NBS for an Importance Level 4 (IL4) Building, which is a requirement for buildings that are essential to post-disaster recovery. As response time is crucial for WFA, special attention was required when designing the garage spaces and garage doors.

The first question was whether to demolish the station or simply renovate and extend the existing building. With a one million construction budget the renovation and addition route was deemed the most viable.

The rebuild involved stripping out and replanning the existing spaces and the addition of five bedrooms on the Southern side. The garage was also extended allowing all pre operational checks and procedures to be carried out by the crews with the garage doors remaining closed. This was not possible within the original garage.

There are always challenges when re-using existing buildings, in this case the building’s heavy concrete blockwork construction, and the risk posed by liquefaction during a seismic event required careful consideration. The usual issues came up on site from soft spots under foundations, through to serious amounts of rain at the end of the construction stage applying some pressure to finishing the car parking and site works.

A great team effort from the WFA staff, the specialist building consultants and the main contractor ensured the project was delivered on time and on budget, with the 28 May 2016 opening day, although very wet,  a great success.

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