Tauranga City Council’s City Transformation Committee has recommended that the storage buildings on the landward side of Dive Crescent (16-24) be demolished by January 2019 to create a temporary car parking area.
The recommendation, made at yesterday’s committee meeting, means that the street art piece 'Messenger' by Charles and Janine Williams will also need to come down by January 2019.
Gareth Wallis, Council's city events manager, acknowledged how iconic this particular piece has become.
“The wall on the Dive Crescent building was allocated to artists and life partners Charles and Janine Williams. Between 23 and 31 March 2017 they created ‘Messenger’, a mural with a strong connection to the location and its history.
“The nature of street art, in combination with a growing and changing city, means that art works pop up in the most random spaces, but also that they may have to make way for potential upgrades.
“All outdoor murals created as part of Paradox: Tauranga Street Art Festival in 2017 have been commissioned to stay on the buildings for at least one year.”
Janine Williams said the community response to the artwork has been enduring and positive.
“We saw a huge reaction to that wall in particular and we are thankful for the opportunity. We’ve had people contacting and tagging us on social media; wedding photos, international publications and of course locals who have been there and shared their moments with the 'Messenger'.
“Our biggest narrative direction when creating the work was to honour the location and its history and that’s what we’ve seen being embraced by our local community.
“We would love to recreate another piece of the same iconic status in the future. Until then we encourage everyone to pass by, snap a photo and wish the 'Messenger' farewell.”
When the Dive Crescent storage buildings come down, 'Messenger' will have been up for over a year and a half.
Council has identified the Dive Crescent area as a key site for future development within Tauranga’s city centre. The City Transformation Committee recommended to bring forward the demolition of the storage buildings at 16-24 Dive Crescent so that temporary car parking can be provided while the Harington Street car parking building construction is underway, before leaving a clean and adaptable site for future development in 2021.
The council-owned and leased buildings at 10 Dive Crescent and 14 Dive Crescent (Fixation Coffee and Iron Design) are subject to an earthquake-prone building notice. However, the City Transformation Committee has recommended not to strengthen these buildings.
The recommendation will require ratification at the full Council meeting on 21 August 2018.