AUT’s new School of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences (ECMS) Building, Ngā Wai Hono on Symonds Street, was officially opened last Friday by the Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. Celebrations included a welcome by AUT’s resident kapa haka group, Titahi ki Tua, and speeches from the Prime Minister and AUT Vice Chancellor, Derek McCormack.
Ngā Wai Hono translates as “The Confluence” and references the waterways under the building that flow in many directions and meet with the water that flows under AUT’s Ngā Wai o Horotiu Marae. The new building stitches into existing structures creating a super-sized facility to enable greater interaction and visibility between the schools of ECMS, Art and Design, and Applied Sciences, acting as a confluence where different disciplines converge and meet up at the same junction.
The new building is an interactive tool for learning and an enabler for new research in the heart of the city campus. The building blends flexible and adaptable computer learning and laboratory environments, project studios, wet and dry making spaces and allows greater access to a range of new and existing workshops and social collaborative spaces where students, staff and industry can all rub shoulders.
Ngā Wai Hono has been in use since the beginning of Semester 1 of this year, with a busy café on the ground floor and the building has already housed activities such as O-Week.