Tirohanga Whānui Bridge wins NZ Architecture Award


Albany’s iconic walking and cycling bridge over SH1 has won a prestigious award for its outstanding design.

The striking red Tirohanga Whānui Bridge which means ‘panoramic view’ won the award for public architecture at the NZ Institute of Architects Awards in Auckland last night.

The bridge architects Wells Architects Planners received the award for the bridge which was built as a joint initiative for the NZ Transport Agency and Watercare, as part of the Northern Corridor Improvements project.

NZ Transport Agency Director of Regional Relationships Steve Mutton says design is now an integral part of delivering great infrastructure projects.

“It goes without saying that this bridge is a stand out structure – unlike any other we have seen before. It’s been recognised for its special dual function as a walking and cycling connection and carrying a new water pipe below the bridge deck.”

In announcing the award, the judges were won over with the bridge which they said “created an invigorating, smile inducing moment on the journey.”

The project team worked closely with lead architect Jeff Wells, designers Aurecon and Mana Whenua to develop the artistic design and name.

The $10M bridge opened in February to reconnect the community between the East Coast Bays and Albany. It gives more choices for people to get to Albany Station, the business area, schools and universities.

photo of award winning bridge

The Tirohanga Whānui bridge carries cyclists, pedestrians and a water pipe over SH1 at Albany as part of the Northern Corridor Improvements project

Mr Mutton says the bridge lights up at night with the watermain lit in blue to represent water flowing under the bridge deck. This made it a feature for people travelling towards the city from the north.

The Northern Corridor Improvements project will provide a much needed transport upgrade for the whole Albany and North Harbour community. It includes a proposed busway station, over 7kms of new walking and cycling paths, a new motorway connection between SH1 and SH18 and will open up access to the Western Ring Route and travel to the airport.

For more information, visit www.nzta.govt.nz/nci(external link) or www.facebook.com/NZTAAkl(external link) or call the project freephone number 0800 624 776.

For more information on the NZIA awards visit www.nzia.co.nz(external link) or https://architecturenow.co.nz(external link)


Plan ahead for a safe, enjoyable journey. Keep up to date with:

  • Phone: 0800 4 HIGHWAYS (0800 44 44 49)