Centrepoint shopping arcade, Masterton

This was a paper I gave at an architecture symposium at Victoria University today (2 Dec 2016). The theme was New Zealand architecture in the 1970s. I also gave a paper a few years ago when the theme was NZ architecture in the 1840s.

The talk was a shorter version of this paper. The full title was:

Centrepoint to Centrepointless: Roger Walker’s Masterton shopping arcade (1972 to 1997).

Abstract: Centrepoint was the name of a shopping arcade that opened in Masterton in December 1972. It was designed by Roger Walker (b. 1942) and commissioned by Ron Brierley and Robert Jones Investments as one of several shopping arcade developments they were making in various places in New Zealand at the time. Centrepoint featured 21 small shops opening from a brick-paved courtyard, with a prominent viewing tower on the corner. It had signature Roger Walker elements such as round pipe windows, steep roofs, and bright colours. Despite being described just before its opening as “Masterton’s biggest ‘happening’”, in 1997 it was demolished. After looking at the opening of Centrepoint, this paper will consider some possible reasons for Centrepoint’s failure.

Alongside this record of architectural loss, I consider how something that is still within the memories of many people (but no longer there to check) is remembered and sometimes misremembered. These are two of many comments that appeared on a popular Facebook page in 2015 in response to a photograph of Centrepoint:

“Loved that building. …. many a good memory. Should still be there; a brilliant example of 70’s design.”

“It was pretty hideous as was much of the 70’s. Food at the cafe was always good though.”

*

SLIDE 1: Image: Gladys Goodall, Felicity Card Company, ‘Centrepoint’, colour postcard, c. 1975. Wairarapa Archive, Ref: 506410. http://masterton.spydus.co.nz/cgi-bin/spydus.exe/ENQ/OPAC/ARCENQ?RNI=506410

Slide 1.PNG

Centrepoint was the name of a shopping arcade that opened in Masterton just before Christmas in 1972. It was designed by Roger Walker (b. 1942) and commissioned by Ron Brierley and Robert Jones Investments as one of several shopping arcade developments they were making in various places in New Zealand at the time. Centrepoint featured 21 small shops opening from a brick-paved courtyard, with a prominent viewing tower on the corner. It had signature Roger Walker elements such as round pipe windows, steep roofs, and bright colours. In 1997, however, it was demolished. This is a brief summary from Roger Walker’s somewhat tongue-in-cheek blog post:

SLIDE 2: “As a frisky young practitioner in 1974 [actually 1972], the obvious gesture was to define the intersection of Bannister and Chapel [actually Queen] Streets, as the centre of Masterton, by raising a tower. Hence its name. As well as a visual marker, the tower, with its public viewing platform gave splendid views over the town and the surrounding countryside. Unfortunately local vandals didn’t appreciate this idea and quickly proceeded to trash the entire interior [of the tower], which led to its being shut off for public access. This sort of made the whole exercise Centrepointless. Having been reduced to the status of a folly, it was then demolished.” Roger Walker, 2011[1]

Roger Walker also suggested that if it had been functional it might have survived: “There are some towers that have survived in New Zealand because they were functional, they held a volume of water at their tops so that gravity could do her thing with the pressure. Hawera and Invercargill feature in our heritage lists as having such towers. Pity that in 1974 Masterton’s water supply was on mains pressure, so that our tower could have had a legitimate function, and subsequently been more respected.” Roger Walker, 2011.[2]

There had been towers in Masterton – a private water tower, the Chief Post Office tower, and a small tower on the chemist’s building on the street corner adjacent to where Centrepoint would later be built. These were all in Queen Street, but were destroyed or badly damaged by the 1942 earthquake.[3]

SLIDE 3: Images: Former buildings in Queen Street, Masterton with towers: WFCA water tower, T G Mason Chemist, and Masterton Post Office (Images supplied by Wairarapa Archive)

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SLIDE 4: Across the road from Centrepoint was the CML building – still there – with a feature that is ‘not quite a tower’ (despite its Art Deco appearance it dates from the late 1950s.[4]) This image also shows the Midland Hotel building which was demolished to make way for Centrepoint. (Images supplied by Wairarapa Archive)

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In this talk I will describe Centrepoint and its opening, and then consider possible reasons for its failure. Alongside this record of architectural loss, I consider how something that is still within the memories of many people (but no longer there to check) is remembered and sometimes misremembered.

SLIDE 5: Image: F Morrell, Queen Street parade, the former Midland Hotel in background; late 1960s?

Another image of the Midland Hotel building … just because I wanted to add this photo of a parade taken by my father, probably in the late 1960s. I grew up in Masterton, and remember going to the record shop in Centrepoint, but I don’t remember climbing the tower; although some of my siblings remembered doing so. I wasn’t one of the local vandals!

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SLIDE 6: Images of Centrepoint under construction in 1972. Courtesy of Wairarapa Archive.

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SLIDE 7: Plan of Centrepoint from Home & Building magazine 1 June 1973; including tower and 16 shops.

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SLIDE 8: Plan with 20 shops seen in Roger Walker’s office on 22 August 2016. Newspaper reports of the opening say there were 21 shops – there may have been one upstairs.

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Home & Building magazine in June 1973 devoted a few pages of photographs and text to Centrepoint: “The building was commissioned in 1971 and was completed at the end of 1972 … The developers have built a number of mall type shopping developments in regional centres and gave the architect a completely free hand to produce a complex that would be economically viable in terms of shop sizes and ‘attractivity’. The resulting building is a deliberately informal grouping of varying sized shops linked together around a glass-roofed second hand brick-paved arcade.”[5] The main entrance was off Masterton’s main shopping street – Queen Street, with a side entrance on Bannister Street.

SLIDE 9: Images and text from Home & Building magazine:

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SLIDE 10: Images and text from Home & Building magazine: “The glass canopy system visually hangs between this tower and a smaller tower at the far end of the site. The sides of the canopy are glazed in and seating for the coffee bar is located within this space.”

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SLIDE 11: Images from Home & Building magazine: “All the elements relating to structure and services are expressed in one way or another as it was felt that shopping was an activity in need of enlivenment… Concrete pipe windows and stripe painted corrugated roofs add to the gaiety although the building has yet to suffer from the installation of a verandah as successive appeals to the common sense of the local authority have failed and even though there are no shop entrances facing public footpaths, irrelevant and antiquated bylaws are enforced”.

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SLIDE 12: Images and text from Home & Building magazine: “The coffee bar opens onto a roof deck and several of the shops have mezzanine floors used for retail or storage purposes. …”

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SLIDE 13: Interior photos (Images and text from Home and Building 1 June 1973): “There are fountains and plenty of brightly coloured lights, signs and ductwork within this central space. Construction of the shops is concrete block and timber ….”

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SLIDE 14: And, of course, those involved with the project took the opportunity to advertise in Home and Building 1 June 1973.

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According to the installer of some of the electrical equipment, Centrepoint included an air conditioning unit and a piped music system “both of which are virtually the only ones of their kind in New Zealand”.[6]

SLIDE 15: These images show the complex with street verandas. From Gerald Melling Positively Architecture! NZ’s Roger Walker; and image from ANZ Bank supplement, Feb 1998, supplied by Wairarapa Archive.

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SLIDE 16: Excerpts from Wairarapa Times Age, Sat Dec 9 1972, p. 5; and Dec 12 1972; showing Roger Walker, and Robert Muldoon & Bob Jones at the opening.

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The development was a joint venture between Ron Brierley and Robert Jones. Robert (Bob) Jones in his book Jones on Property said “A few years ago, as a consequence of my fairly extensive travels…I launched into a form of centre city retail development that is common place in many foreign cities, but was then largely unknown in New Zealand. (p. 68) … it seemed to me that the creation of a number of small boutiques built around a central arcade would be a considerable improvement for both retailers and consumers. (p. 69)… I set to and built these structures in half a dozen cities using different architects and different design schemes. The schemes were greeted with enthusiasm by retailers who quickly signed for the shops… I was particularly careful with site selection…” (p. 70.)[7] Apparently all he asked of Roger Walker was ‘some kind of courtyard’.[8] Gerald Melling says: “The experience of entering into this barely restrained anarchy of elements is pure marketplace. And quite deliberately so. Walker sought consciously to simulate the ad hoc atmosphere of open-air European markets, where transaction and barter take place both outside and inside the formal place of business”.[9]

It was officially opened by National Party MP Robert Muldoon on 11 December 1972.[10] Having lost the general election to a Labour government only a couple of weeks before, Muldoon was merely an MP and not the Deputy Prime Minister he had been when invited to open it. According to Roger Walker, it was an ‘uncomfortable affair’ as Muldoon used the occasion to hit back at the new government. In a 1997 newspaper article Muldoon was reported ‘to have snarled at invited guests’: “Now you’ve got a Government of railway workers, school teachers and trade unionists. I hope you’re bloody satisfied.”[11] However I think this is Roger Walker misremembering (and embellishing) something that Bob Jones said and attributing it to Muldoon. From newspaper reports at the time Bob Jones is reported as saying: “While there is rent control under a Government of teachers, preachers and railway workers we don’t intend to do anything more in this country…”[12] Muldoon’s speech was mostly targeted at the new government (but not in the words quoted above). He barely mentioned the building, although he was reported as congratulating Brierley-Jones on an “imaginative enterprise and said that such developments set new standards of convenience and comfort for New Zealand shoppers.”[13] Jones said of the opening speeches, in his book Memories of Muldoon, “we laid it on fairly heavily and neither address was well received. There was cat-calling and while some people laughed, others were disapproving.”[14]

There was a rush to finish the shops in time to open and all but five of the 21 shops opened on Monday 11 December; business was described as “tremendously good” on the first day, and the chairman of the mall’s promotion society, Mr P Judd is reported as saying: “in spite of the Disneyland appearance of the building from the outside, once people were inside they thought it was terrific”.[15]

However, due to vandalism the tower was closed only a few years after opening. The ownership changed in 1980 and again in 1991 at a mortgagee sale.[16] The complex was demolished in June 1997.[17]

SLIDE 17: So why did it fail? I will look at some possible reasons for its failure:

  • Masterton too conservative?
  • Masterton too small to sustain 21 new shops in an arcade?
  • Economic downturn in 1980s?
  • High rents?
  • Design problems?

A heap of trouble all the way and a lesson against pioneering” Bob Jones, the developer, Jones on Property, facing page 49.

 SLIDE 18: Was it that Masterton just wasn’t ready for it – too conservative? (Was it a ‘white elephant’?)

Images: Trevor Jones, Circus elephant and children’s tug-of-war, Queen Street, Masterton, 1970s.[18]

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That Masterton was too conservative is a commonly given reason for its failure. A Dominion Post article recently said “But its quirky, modernist design, featuring steep angles, portholes, odd shapes and lollipop colours, didn’t appeal to conservative Wairarapa tastes at the time.”[19] The article also quoted Wairarapa Archive historian Gareth Winter as saying: “Masterton people just generally weren’t fond of the complex, deriding it as ‘Noddy Town’. It raised a few eyebrows … it was sort of fundamentally out of place for a conservative little town like ours.”

This reason is also implied by Roger Walker in his “In memory of Centrepoint” blog post.[20] And Bob Jones wrote about his mall developments: “tenants complained that, after an initial curiosity, public response was poor and oddly there seemed to be a reluctance to use the buildings. The public seemed almost shy of the new phenomenon”.[21]

On a website of Wairarapa art reviews, David Famularo, a local commentator, wrote: “Masterton being a conservative town, Centrepoint had its critics, with the noticeable absence of the town’s mayor and councillors at the official opening. And the truth is, the town never really took the building to its heart. Even when Centrepoint was demolished in 1997, there were few tears and definitely no outcry as had regularly accompanied the destruction of other historic buildings in Masterton’s CBD (all of the protests, I should point out, failed to stop a single demolition)….” [22]

I asked Roger Walker why the mayor did not attend the opening and his response was that the mayor and local MP – being supporters of the Labour party – weren’t invited by Bob Jones. I wondered if it was because of the dispute over having to add verandahs, but Roger didn’t think this was the reason. My memory of the mayor – Norm Tankersley (mayor from 1962 to 1974) was that he was unlikely to be a Labour supporter – local archivist Gareth Winter said the same. The MP for the Wairarapa (Jack Williams) was a Labour party representative.[23]

From 1975 to 1998 a one-way traffic system applied in Queen Street, which I remember being controversial when it was introduced.[24] Another sign of conservative Masterton?

Slide 19: Was Masterton too small to sustain 21 new shops in an arcade? (Images of some famous shopping arcades – Galerie Vivienne, in Paris and Galerie Vittorio Emanuele II, in Milan)

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Bob Jones wrote: “I felt certain the problem lay primarily in the close concentration of so many new businesses, none of which had established a clientele, and that this was a problem time alone would heal…”(p. 71) His first mall development was in Lower Hutt and after a few poor years, it was doing better. He thought the others would ‘make it too’, but they didn’t, “without much litigation, numerous rows and much unpleasantness”.[25]

Johann Geist in Arcades: The History of a Building Type, considered the conditions that make for a successful arcade. “Its prosperity depends to a considerable extent on the urban context in which it is located. It can thrive only if it lies in the main commercial district and connects two streets which are equally heavily frequented” (p. 4). [My emphasis] “The success or failure of an arcade often depends on reasons other than the arcade itself. Changes in the environment, in the composition of the arcade’s clientele, or in the public’s sense of space can all have a great effect on the life of the arcade.” (p. 110). It must be located in the centre of a city where there is a ‘constant flow of visitors’ (p. 111)… “A linear commercial district is not well suited since here the arcade leads away from the main business areas”. (p. 111) [My emphasis][26]

In the 1970s, Masterton’s shopping centre was ‘a linear commercial district’ – with most of the shops being on Queen Street. Centrepoint had two entrances – the main one on Queen Street, and a side entrance on Bannister Street, but it had no access through the back – it essentially didn’t lead anywhere. Dale Egan, who ran the café in Centrepoint, told me: It “might have been a better mall if you could have cut through and [it was] not a dead end.”[27] However, the street at the back (Dixon St) was not then a shopping street, so this may not have made much difference. Also, Masterton’s population was under 20,000 during the 1970s to 90s, which may have been too low to sustain the ‘constant flow of visitors’ that Geist thought essential. (Masterton’s population was between 18,500 and 19,600 from 1971 to 2001.[28]) The owner in 1997 when it was demolished said: “Here in Masterton I’ve found people can’t make a living out of small shops…If the building was in Parnell it would be a different story”.[29]

Slide 20: Did it fail because of the economic downturn? Image: Map of Deprivation in Masterton, 2001. From Peter Crampton, et al. Degrees of deprivation in New Zealand: an atlas of socioeconomic difference, Auckland: David Bateman. http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/map/12109/deprivation-in-Masterton

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The 1980s were not a good time for many in New Zealand, but provincial Wairarapa was particularly hard hit. “When trade barriers were lifted in the 1980s, several textile and other [Wairarapa] manufacturers failed. A further 700 people lost their jobs in 1989 when the Waingawa freezing works closed.”[30]

Local commentator, David Famularo: “In my memory, there were two Centrepoints – the one that was opened while the Wairarapa, along with the rest of New Zealand, was experiencing one of the most prosperous periods in its history… The other was the down-in-the-dumps Centrepoint, suffering along with the rest of the town the recession of the early 1980s which was felt particularly hard in provincial regions like the Wairarapa. I have to say that I associate Centrepoint more with the latter. Indeed, I can remember regularly walking through when barely three or four of its 21 shops were leased, one of them being the town’s record store”.[31] Once a few shops fail and remain empty, an arcade can become an unattractive place to go into.

Dale Egan, leasee of the café in Centrepoint for nine years, told me “the first five years were the best, then the freezing works closed down and McDonald’s came to town”.[32] This latter was in about 1992 as the Aratoi (the Wairarapa Museum of Art and History) timeline states: “[1992] The Warehouse opens its first Masterton store and McDonalds opens … Multinationals and ‘Big Box’ retailing come to town putting pressure on long established local retailers.”[33]

High rents have also been noted as a possible problem, but all but five of the 21 shops opened on 11 December 1972.[34] According to Bob Jones, “the schemes were greeted with enthusiasm by retailers who quickly signed for the shops”; if a tenant said high rent was a problem he “would ask them what they thought the rent ought to be. Usually they would quote a figure $15 or $20 a week less and I would then want to know whether that $20 a week would make their business a success. The answer was obviously no.”[35] Nevertheless Bob Jones was reported to say at the opening, in a manner not likely to endear him to locals: “Our buildings cost more than the ugliness around this town, so our rents must be higher”.[36] I can’t be sure, but I suspect rent became an issue once a business was starting to fail.

SLIDE 21: Was it aspects of the design? (Image of Centrepoint plan from Home and Building, 1 June 1973)

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Bob Jones maintains it was the design: “Had we stuck to an orthodox design it would have been a success…”.[37] “Slowly the tenants turned on the landlord and the nightmare began. The buildings were, they protested, badly designed, the shops too small, the rents too high, the arcades led nowhere and so on.”[38]

When a photo of Centrepoint was posted on a popular Facebook page in February 2015, some of the 217 comments related to aspects of the design and construction: “lots of fond memories of our business in Centrepoint – also lots of problems with leaking roof!” “The bricked entrance and walk way was a killer when you wore heels.”… “I did some work down stairs once, the building leaked like a sieve!”… “The place leaked …was cold”…[39]

Wairarapa archivist Gareth Winter said: ‘But they [the shops] were “not very functional” and there were problems with leaks, a slippery floor and high rents. The viewing platform was soon deemed unsafe.’[40] Tenants of the building ‘spoken to’ by the local newspaper in 1985 cited “high rents, heavy expenses, problems with leaks and heating, high overheads and a lack of public patronage” as reasons that it started to fail.[41]

Roger Walker, in 1997, said it probably failed because there was no “anchor tenant” to attract large numbers of shoppers into the building.[42] However, I think the shops were too small to attract the kind of business that is usually an ‘anchor tenant’ in a mall, such as a big chain store, unless it had been remodelled.[43]

Conclusion

Centrepoint opened with a flourish, despite (or perhaps helped by) controversial opening speeches by Rob Muldoon and Bob Jones. However, 25 years later it was demolished. I have discussed several possible reasons for Centrepoint’s failure and eventual demolition. This is only conjecture, but with Masterton’s low population and ribbon shopping centre, as an arcade I think it was always going to struggle to be viable, and the economic downturn in the 1980s did not help. I don’t know how much contribution aspects of the design – or Masterton’s conservatism – made to its failure, but as Centrepoint was obviously different from other Masterton buildings, its design was an easy target to blame.

In 1997 Centrepoint was demolished and replaced by a building that housed the ANZ bank until mid-2016. However, the jeweller’s shop which faced Queen Street survived (Slide 22) as did the top of the tower (Slide 23), which was bought by a local car dealer and used as his office until being offered for sale in May 2016.[44] However, when they tried to remove it, it was so well anchored to the ground it became too costly to achieve successfully so it was scrapped. They did, however, manage to save the roof (which was probably the only original Centrepoint part anyway) and move it to the Masterton drag strip at Hood Aerodrome, where it is to be used for some sort of shelter.[45]

Slide 22: Remnants of Centrepoint (1): remaining shop (photographs by Vivienne Morrell, 2016)

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Slide 23: Remnants of Centrepoint (2): Top of the tower (Image from ‘TradeMe’, 13 May 2016; and tower coming down: Wairarapa Times Age, 26 June 1997)

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Slide 24: Remnants of Centrepoint (3) – the steel cone from the top of the tower also survived; according to Roger Walker: “My ex wife has the steel cone peak of the tower at her Featherston property.”[46] Image of cone from Wairarapa Times Age, 16 July 1997, with caption: “Masterton car dealer Ian Hoggard, left, and salesman Kenton Simpson size up the task of getting the cone back on top of the Centrepoint tower turret…”

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Slide 25: Whatever you thought about Centrepoint, it was memorable. Here is a small selection of comments that appeared on a popular Facebook page in 2015 (in response to a photo of Centrepoint on the ‘Old Wellington Region’ page, posted on 4 Feb 2015):

“Yes I remember going up the tower and it did smell a little. It was a real rabbit warren of shops, with nooks and crannies everywhere.”

“I worked in here… – I loved the little gift shop further inside it. It got darker as you walked further down the back. The record shop was cool too!”

“Loved that building. …. many a good memory. Should still be there; a brilliant example of 70’s design.”

“Horrible eyesore”…

”Wow. Brings back memories. It was a bit out of time for downtown Masterton but we all thought it was pretty cool at the time!!”

“It was pretty hideous as was much of the 70’s. Food at the cafe was always good though.”[47]

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In the talk I added this slide, as an example of the sort of fashion you could buy at Centrepoint in 1972.

Slide 30 fashion.PNG

This is a list of the 16 shops that were ready when Centrepoint opened in 1972.

list-of-shops-dec-1972

REFERENCES

Aratoi’s Pathways, a brief timeline of the Wairarapa, 1992, http://education.rangitane.iwi.nz/aratois-pathways-a-brief-timeline-of-the-wairarapa/

Bonallack, Andrew ‘Former centrepiece of city up for grabs’, Wairarapa Times Age, May 14, 2016: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/wairarapa-times-age/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503414&objectid=11638982

‘Carnival atmosphere marks opening of Centrepoint’, Wairarapa Times Age, 12 December 1972, p. 1

‘Centrepoint demise end of an era’, Wairarapa Times Age, 28 June 1997

‘Centrepoint Shopping Development, Masterton’, Home & Building, 1 June 1973, pp. 54-57

Crampton, Peter, et al. Degrees of deprivation in New Zealand: an atlas of socioeconomic difference, Auckland: David Bateman. Map of Deprivation in Masterton on: http://www.teara.govt.nz/en/map/12109/deprivation-in-Masterton

Department of Statistics, New Zealand Official Yearbook 2006 online: https://www3.stats.govt.nz/New_Zealand_Official_Yearbooks/2006/NZOYB_2006.html#idsect2_1_21022

Dominion Post, 13 May 2016: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/79911120/mastertons-quirky-centrepoint-tower-for-sale-would-make-ideal-bach.html

Egan, Dale, Personal communication with Vivienne Morrell, July 2016

Facebook, Old Wellington Region, 4 Feb 2015: https://www.facebook.com/624647914290150/photos/a.739778282777112.1073741835.624647914290150/771144446307162/?type=3&theater

Famularo, David ‘Wairarapa re-Views’, 17 Feb 2012 http://wairarapareviews.kiwi.nz/tag/centrepoint/

Geist, Johann F. Arcades: The History of a Building Type, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1985

Jones, Robert Jones on Property: The property game for fun and profit, Fourth Estate Books, 1977

Jones, Robert Memories of Muldoon, Canterbury University Press, 1997

List of Wairarapa MPs, Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wairarapa_(New_Zealand_electorate)

List of Masterton mayors, Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayor_of_Masterton (accessed 28 August 2016)

‘Masterton’s biggest happening’, Wairarapa Times Age Dec 9, 1972, p. 5

McDonald, Nick ‘Centrepoint coming down’, Wairarapa Times Age, 11 June 1997

McDonald, Nick ‘Centrepoint’s fate saddens architect’ Wairarapa Times Age, 14 June 1997

Melling, Gerald Positively Architecture! New Zealand’s Roger Walker, Dunedin: Square One Press, 1985

“‘Noddy Town’ Tower yours for $15k”, Dominion Post 13 May 2016, p. A5

Schrader, Ben ‘Wairarapa region – Diversifying the economy’, Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 3-Jun-15

‘Shopping mall in Masterton to stay unique’, Dominion, 13 Dec 1972, p. 5

United Heating and Electrical Ltd advertisement, Wairarapa Times Age, 9 Dec 1972, p. 7

Walker, Roger ‘In memory of Centrepoint’, posted 16 Dec 2011, http://www.rogerwalker.co.nz/2011/12/in-memory-of-centrepoint/ accessed 28 August 2016.

Walker, Roger interview with Vivienne Morrell, 22 August 2016.

Winter, Gareth, The Look of Masterton: A celebration of 150 years 1854-2004, Wairarapa Archive, 2004

Winter, Gareth, Email to Vivienne Morrell, 23 August 2016.

*

Footnotes

[1] Roger Walker, ‘In memory of Centrepoint’, posted 16 Dec 2011, http://www.rogerwalker.co.nz/2011/12/in-memory-of-centrepoint/ accessed 28 August 2016.

[2] Roger Walker, ‘In memory of Centrepoint’

[3] Gareth Winter, The Look of Masterton: A celebration of 150 years 1854-2004, Wairarapa Archive, 2004, pp. 27, 28, 45.

[4] Gareth Winter, The Look of Masterton, 2004, p. 97

[5] ‘Centrepoint Shopping Development, Masterton’, Home & Building, 1 June 1973, pp. 54-57

[6] United Heating and Electrical Ltd advertisement, Wairarapa Times Age, 9 Dec 1972, p. 7

[7] Robert Jones, Jones on Property: The property game for fun and profit, Fourth Estate Books, 1977

[8] Gerald Melling, Positively Architecture! NZ’s Roger Walker, Dunedin: Square One Press, 1985, p. 57

[9] Melling, p. 58

[10] ‘Shopping mall in Masterton to stay unique’, Dominion, 13 Dec 1972, p. 5

[11] Quoted in ‘Centrepoint demise end of an era’, Wairarapa Times Age, 28 June 1997.

[12] ‘Shopping mall in Masterton to stay unique’, Dominion, 13 Dec 1972, p.5. The article said it cost “$600,000 plus”.

[13] Wairarapa Times Age, 12 December 1972, p. 2

[14] Robert Jones, Memories of Muldoon, Canterbury University Press, 1997, p 11

[15] ‘Shopping mall in Masterton to stay unique’ Dominion 13 Dec 1972, p. 5

[16] Nick McDonald, ‘Centrepoint coming down’, Wairarapa Times Age, 11 June 1997

[17] ‘Centrepoint demise end of an era’, Wairarapa Times Age, 28 June 1997

[18] I couldn’t resist putting in these images taken by my cousin. He said no matter how many children took part in the tug-of-war, the elephant always won. Does ‘white elephant’ come to mind? It did to my Masterton-based sister when she saw the photo.

[19] Dominion Post, 13 May 2016: http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/79911120/mastertons-quirky-centrepoint-tower-for-sale-would-make-ideal-bach.html

[20] Roger Walker blog, ‘In memory of Centrepoint’, December 16, 2011

[21] Bob Jones, Jones on Property, p. 71

[22] David Famularo, ‘Wairarapa re-Views’, Feb 17 2012 http://wairarapareviews.kiwi.nz/tag/centrepoint/

[23] Author interview with Roger Walker, 22 August 2016. Email from Gareth Winter, 23 August 2016. List of MPs on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wairarapa_(New_Zealand_electorate) and mayors: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayor_of_Masterton (accessed 28 August 2016)

[24] The dates are from Gareth Winter, The Look of Masterton

[25] Bob Jones, Jones on Property, p. 72.

[26] Johann F Geist, Arcades: The History of a Building Type, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1985.

[27] Personal communication (Facebook messaging), author with Dale Egan, 10 July 2016

[28] Department of Statistics, 1986 Census of Population and Dwellings. Series A Report 2, p. 34. Changing territorial boundaries mean it is not easy to compare population, but the Department of Statistics, New Zealand Official Yearbook 2006 (online: https://www3.stats.govt.nz/New_Zealand_Official_Yearbooks/2006/NZOYB_2006.html#idsect2_1_21022 ) provides figures for Masterton of around 19,500 from 1991 to 2001.

[29] Owner Percy McFadzean quoted in ‘Centrepoint coming down’, Wairarapa Times Age, 11 June 1997

[30] Ben Schrader, ‘Wairarapa region – Diversifying the economy’, Te Ara – the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, updated 3-Jun-15

[31] David Famularo, ‘Wairarapa re-views’, Feb 17 2012

[32] Personal communication, author with Dale Egan, July 2016

[33] Aratoi’s Pathways, a brief timeline of the Wairarapa, 1992, http://education.rangitane.iwi.nz/aratois-pathways-a-brief-timeline-of-the-wairarapa/

[34] ‘Shopping mall in Masterton to stay unique’, Dominion, 13 Dec 1972, p.5.

[35] Robert Jones, Jones on Property, pp. 70-71

[36] Quoted in ‘Shopping mall in Masterton to stay unique’, Dominion, 13 Dec 1972, p.5.

[37] Robert Jones, Memories of Muldoon, Canterbury University Press, 1997, p. 10

[38] Robert Jones, Jones on Property, p. 71

[39] Facebook, Old Wellington Region, 4 Feb 2015: https://www.facebook.com/624647914290150/photos/a.739778282777112.1073741835.624647914290150/771144446307162/?type=3&theater 217 people commented, 220 shared the photo and 735 ‘liked’ it. Comments ranged from people who had worked there, owned businesses in it, people who had climbed the tower regularly, met their future partners there and so on.

[40] “‘Noddy Town’ Tower yours for $15k”, Dominion Post 13 May 2016, p. A5

[41] Nick McDonald ‘Centrepoint coming down’, Wairarapa Times Age, 11 June 1997

[42] Nick McDonald ‘Centrepoint’s fate saddens architect’ Wairarapa Times Age, 14 June 1997

[43] According to Wikipedia an anchor store “is one of the larger stores in a shopping mall, usually a department store or a major retail chain”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anchor_store accessed 12 August 2016

[44] Andrew Bonallack, ‘Former centrepiece of city up for grabs’, Wairarapa Times Age, May 14, 2016; http://www.nzherald.co.nz/wairarapa-times-age/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503414&objectid=11638982

[45] Information from Trevor Jones of Masterton, email 30 October 2016.

[46] Roger Walker, email to Vivienne Morrell, 18 August 2016

[47] Facebook, Old Wellington Region page, 4 Feb 2015: a small selection of the 217 comments on a photograph of Centrepoint. Accessed 11 August 2016

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