News Release

Architects Recognised for Work on Temple View New Zealand Buildings

There’s something distinct and remarkable about the land and buildings in Temple View.

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the area have long recognised that and now it is being noted by others as well.

On Friday, 4 May 2018, the New Zealand Institute of Architects presented architectural design awards in the Waikato/Bay of Plenty region to Walker Group Architects for four building projects undertaken by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in its Hamilton Temple View development.


They received an award for the David O. McKay Stake and Cultural Events Centre in the “Public Architecture” category.

Awards were also received for the Wendell B. Mendenhall Building, Kai Hall and the George R. Biesinger Building in the “Heritage” category.

These buildings were preserved and refurbished in memory of the college and the activities that took place there, as well as the early labour missionaries who constructed those and other buildings on the property, including the Hamilton New Zealand Temple.

Taupo architect, Gavin Robins, who convened an awards jury that included New Plymouth architect Murali Bhasker and Hamilton architect Megan Scott, said:

“The quality of architecture we saw throughout the region is exemplary, and we were especially happy to see the efforts being taken to reverse the decline of Hamilton’s inner city.”

“Older buildings are being converted to accommodate modern work practices and provide new leisure opportunities for locals and visitors.”

In the Temple View project, the Church has tried to preserve and recognize the past “in very real ways,” Bishop Dean M. Davies of the Church’s Presiding Bishopric said.

While facing stiff competition from other projects in the Waikato area, the David O. McKay Stake and Cultural Events Centre won the award in the category of “Public Architecture.” The award described the building as “a monumental yet restrained and timeless design that reflects the history of the LDS Church by emulating elements from the original temple.”

Taking first in the “Heritage” category, the award noted that the Wendell B. Mendenhall Library “shows new life being breathed respectfully into modernist LDS Church buildings, and new connections being created between them.”


Also receiving a “Heritage” award, Kai Hall was described as having “a long history of feeding multitudes at large gatherings and now, preserved and renewed, it will have a long future.”


The G. R. Biesinger Building received a “Heritage” award and it was noted that this “… much loved 1960’s chapel with significant cultural value to the local community has been sensitively upgraded by the architect.”


These buildings represent the first of many improvements made by the Church as it continues development in the Temple View area.


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