Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Eye on Auckland blog

Sydney from the Eye on Auckland blog stopped by and left a comment to my post on the Dawn Persson boardwalk -- so, I thought I'd head on over to his blog to check it out. Well, the result was another link added to the growing list at the left. Sydney's blog is excellent -- it gives you a feel of Auckland's present and what may come, along with a bit of Auckland's past, such as the post there on the Deloitte Centre and Tower. This is a new building on the old site of the Victoria Arcade (one of Auckland's late lamented 19th century gems) and the Jean Batten State Building.

Sydney asked if his timeline for the landuse of the site is correct: looks like it is. The former Chief Post Office in Auckland between Shortland and Fort Streets from 1867 was indeed on the site of the original Government Store in Auckland, itself built on the muddy beach. By the 1930s, it had been replaced by the grander Chief Post Office at Britomart, and during that last decade part of the site was further cut into by the establishment of Jean Batten Place by the Auckland City Council (laid out in an effort to alleviate traffic problems on Queen Street). The new Departmental State Building which replaced the old post office (built from 1937-1941) was later named not directly in honour of Jean Batten as many believe, but from the name of the new street along its eastern facade.

I remember, in 2001, heading into the BNZ building which replaced the Victoria Arcade. I was after information from the bank's archives on the history of the BNZ in Avondale. It was a spooky experience; I had to wait in a hallway with locked doors all around, while first one person appeared through one door to ask what I wanted, then back back behind a locked door, and then another door opened and I was handed a small photocopy of an index card listing Avondale's BNZ agencies and banks. It was handy information -- but definitely one of the oddest ways I've ever collected data.


  1. Thank you ever so much for the kind words and for setting my mind at ease. I have also added your blog to my links page and I will stop by as often as possible. Once again thank you and keep up the good work.

  2. You're most welcome, Sydney -- and absolutely the same to you. It's great to see another Auckland blog, and yours is stunning. Thanks very much!