Commercial Building

Capital Music; 221 Cuba Street; 223 Cuba Street

221-225 Cuba Street, Te Aro, Wellington
Map
  • Constructed

    1896

  • Architect(s)

    Unknown

  • Builder(s)

    Unknown

  • 221- 225 Cuba Street is the remnant façade of an 1896 row of three two-storey shop/dwellings and is a good representative example of Victorian Classical architecture. The timber façade is graceful and well-proportioned and the reproduction shop-fronts and tiled shop entrances are pleasant modern interventions. 

    The building also has historic value for its association with the strong growth and development of Cuba Street during the Edwardian period, which resulted in the building of many fine commercial buildings.

    Although the majority of this building was demolished in 2004, the façade has some heritage value for its contribution to the Cuba Street Heritage Area streetscape. 


  • close History
    • The commercial building is situated at 221-225 Cuba Street is located on part of section 128 of Wellington, an original section that was subdivided in 1864 and again in 1865. The 1891 Thomas Ward map of Wellington indicates that the site had been built upon prior to the construction of the current building. The current commercial building was built in 1896 for P.D. Davis, a popular figure from Upper Hutt who founded Maidstone Park. The lower storey of this two-storey timber building was used for retail and commercial purposes, and the upper storey was used as a residence.

      This building was one of a number of small retail outlets constructed in the late nineteenth, and early twentieth centuries in the Upper Cuba Street area. Then a thriving retail centre, the Upper Cuba Street area became progressively less prosperous as the twentieth century advanced. The area escaped any major redevelopment until the early twenty first century.

      In 2004 this building was incorporated into the large two-hotel ‘CQ’ development. This development included the former northern annexe of the People’s Palace Hotel (WCC 16/89.3), the former Railton/People’s Palace Hotel (WCC 16/89.4), this timber façade at 221-225 Cuba, and the façade of a pleasant c.1920 two-storey stripped Classical commercial building (WCC Cuba St Heritage Area – contributor).

      The front façade of 221-225 Cuba Street was removed and placed in storage, while the remainder of the building was demolished. Following the construction of the new hotel, the timber façade was reinstated into the new development.

      Following the building’s demolition it was removed from the NZHPT register.

    • Modifications close
      • 1896
      • Probable original construction
      • 2004
      • Majority of building, except Cuba Street façade, demolished
      • 2007
      • 221-225 Cuba Street, for café to open to the public once construction work is complete (00078:2650:171320)
      • 2008
      • 221-237 Cuba Street, fitout and plumbing of retail tenancy 5, textile art gallery and book shop (00078:2686:177823)
      • 2008
      • 221 Cuba Street [213-233 Cuba Street], enlarge existing bathroom and minor adjustments to apartment 4G Street (00078:2697:180461)
    • Occupation History close
      • unknown
      • Not Assessed
  • close Architectural Information
    • Building Classification(s) close

      Not assessed

    • Architecture close

      221- 225 Cuba Street is the remnant façade of an 1896 row of three two-storey shop/dwellings.

      This building was originally constructed in timber framing on concrete foundations and piles, clad in rusticated weatherboard, with a corrugated iron roof. It was designed to house three shops on the ground floor with residences above, a common feature of Edwardian Cuba Street. The façade is very plain and features three pairs of arch headed windows in the first floor that were once separated by concrete fire walls. The building is capped by a standard bracketed cornice and timber parapet. There is no ornament on the façade and its simplicity is a strength, with the uncomplicated character of the building providing a degree of contrast to the Cuba Street townscape. The façade has some rarity value as one of the few remaining timber commercial facades of this type, style and size, in the central business district.

      In 2004 this building was one of several on Cuba Street to be included in a hotel redevelopment. The front façade of this building was removed and placed in storage at this time, while the remainder of the building was demolished. Following the construction of the new hotel, the timber façade was reinstated into the new development.

      The reproduction shop-fronts and tiled shop entrances are pleasant modern interventions, as is the somewhat over-scale modern verandah.

    • Materials close
      Timber
    • Setting close

      221-225 Cuba Street is part of a large two-hotel development that also incorporates the northern annexe of the former People’s Palace Hotel (WCC 16/89.3), the former Railton/People’s Palace Hotel (WCC 16/89.4), and the façade of a pleasant c.1920 two-storey stripped Classical commercial building (WCC Cuba St Heritage Area – contributor). The two retained facades form part of the street-edge of the southernmost hotel in this development. The bulk of the hotel is set back from the street in the form of two, tall, towers that are somewhat taller than their neighbours. The jumbled grey modern shop-fronts to the south complete the hotel development and are, along with the functional Ellmers building (with its distinctive concrete ‘shod’ verandah posts), non-contributors to the Heritage Area.

      The CQ hotel development is set in the Cuba Street Heritage Area on a section of Cuba Street between Vivian and Abel Smith streets. This stretch of Cuba Street has a startling entrance at the southern end of great architectural and cultural contrast. It sets the extremely dignified former National Bank building (now up-market restaurant Logan Brown) opposite the simple, if dignified, Morgan’s building. The remainder of the block has undergone considerable change in the last 20 years which has impacted on the overall integrity of the heritage streetscape. The scale of the block is predominantly two and three storeys, with the notable exception of the current and future hotel complex and Booth House. The street edge line is fragmented in this block with many gaps and breaks and the heritage character of the street is undermined with many poorly-considered modern buildings. There are, however, some individual buildings that have high heritage value and remain a strong presence in the streetscape.

      The building makes a positive contribution to the Cuba Street Heritage Area.

      The timber façade of 221- 225 Cuba Street is sited in the Cuba Street Heritage Area and makes a positive contribution to the significant collection of heritage buildings that form the Cuba Street Heritage Area. The scale, materials and style of this building contribute to the townscape of Cuba Street.

  • close Cultural Value

    221- 225 Cuba Street is the remnant façade of an 1896 row of three two-storey shop/dwellings and is a good representative example of Victorian Classical architecture. The timber façade is graceful and well-proportioned and the reproduction shop-fronts and tiled shop entrances are pleasant modern interventions.

    The building also has historic value for its association with the strong growth and development of Cuba Street during the Edwardian period, which resulted in the building of many fine commercial buildings.

    Although the majority of this building was demolished in 2004, the façade has some heritage value for its contribution to the Cuba Street Heritage Area streetscape.

    • Aesthetic Value close
      • Architectural

        Does the item have architectural or artistic value for characteristics that may include its design, style, era, form, scale, materials, colour, texture, patina of age, quality of space, craftsmanship, smells, and sounds?

        221- 225 Cuba Street is the remnant façade of an 1896 row of three two-storey shop/dwellings and is a good representative example of Victorian Classical architecture. The timber façade is graceful and well-proportioned and the reproduction shop-fronts and tiled shop entrances are pleasant modern interventions.

      • Group

        Is the item part of a group of buildings, structures, or sites that taken together have coherence because of their age, history, style, scale, materials, or use?

        The façade has some group value as one of four heritage buildings that form part of the large, c.2004, two-hotel ‘CQ’ development.

      • Townscape

        Does the item have townscape value for the part it plays in defining a space or street; providing visual interest; its role as a landmark; or the contribution it makes to the character and sense of place of Wellington?

        The scale, materials and style of this façade contribute to the townscape of Cuba Street and it has townscape value for the role that it plays in the streetscape and as a part of the Cuba Street Heritage Area.

    • Historic Value close
      • Association

        Is the item associated with an important historic event, theme, pattern, phase, or activity?

        The building has historic value for its association with the strong growth and development of Cuba Street during the Edwardian period, which resulted in the building of many fine commercial buildings.

    • Scientific Value close
      • Archaeological

        Does the item have archaeological value for its ability to provide scientific information about past human activity?

        Pre- 1900 building (most demolished in c.2004 for modern development) Central City NZAA R27/270

    • Social Value close
      • Identity Sense Of Place Continuity

        Is the item a focus of community, regional, or national identity? Does the item contribute to sense of place or continuity?

        This building is part of a group of Edwardian commercial buildings on Cuba Street which contribute to the sense of place and continuity of the Cuba Street Heritage Area.

    • Level of Cultural Heritage Significance close
      • Authentic

        Does the item have authenticity or integrity because it retains significant fabric from the time of its construction or from later periods when important additions or modifications were carried out?

        The majority of this building was demolished in 2004 and only the façade has been retained. It has some authenticity as a representative of a simple commercial Edwardian timber building.

      • Local Regional National International

      • Representative

        Is the item a good example of the class it represents?

        The building is representative of the architecture and history found on Cuba Street. It has a distinctive character and adds to the variety of Cuba Street as a contrast to the more elaborate and ornate buildings.

    • Local / Regional / National / International Importance close

      Not assessed

  • close Site Detail
    • District Plan Number

      16/89.5 (front facade)

    • Legal Description

      Pt sec 128 Town of Wellington, Lots 1 &2 DP 366988

    • Heritage New Zealand Listed

      Not listed

    • Archaeological Site

      NZAA Central City Archaeological Area R27/270

    • Current Uses

      unknown

    • Former Uses

      unknown

    • Has building been funded

      No

    • Funding Amount

      Not applicable

    • Earthquake Prone Status

      Outside Earthquake Prone Policy

  • close Additional Information

Last updated: 17/10/2017 3:51:39 a.m.