Dunedin Public Art Gallery

Octa’s role included an Issues and Options Study, Community Consultation, Council Facilitation, Scope and Design, and Project Management.

Following a period of public controversy over the preferred location of the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, Octa was commissioned to complete a Study Report that examined four options (Gallery in the Park, in the City, part of an existing museum, or greenfields).  Octa facilitated the public consultation and Council consideration that lead to the decision to relocate to the Octagon.  The DIC building complex consisted of five buildings with a total floor area of 11,200m² spread over four stories.  Octa was engaged as project managers to scope and then manage the design of the new Art Gallery.

From an early stage in the project, Octa determined the construction sequence that took account of the complexities of planning an Art Gallery within 5 different buildings.  This task included strengthening and services as well as retaining the important elements of the buildings.

The timing for introduction of extra scope items was also managed by Octa.  Any decisions were made in consideration of the status of the construction work with Octa able to advise Council as to the optimal time by which these items could be included to avoid delaying the construction work.  By this mechanism and following additional funds over $1.5m worth of extra scope was integrated into the project.  This included significant quality improvements such as international standard environmental control extending to all galleries, improved lighting and security systems, pre-action sprinkler systems, fibrous plaster wall linings and a general upgrade to internal building finishes. 

Demolition work was kept to a minimum with only one building facing the Octagon demolished to provide space for the three storey atrium.  Extensive use of existing spaces were made so as to provide a variety of display areas.

The project was successfully delivered in 1996.

Project Name

Dunedin Public Art Gallery


Dunedin City Council