Specialist Roofing & Cladding

Division of Aquaheat New Zealand Ltd

New Supreme Court Building & Refurbishment of Old High Court Building

Main Contractor- Mainzeal Property & Construction Ltd

Consultants - Warren & Mahoney Architects

Completion - February 2010

Product Details - Aquaheat Classic Metal - Standing Seam Profile, VM Pigmento Zinc Roofing and Flashings.
Aquaheat Classic Metal - Hook Seam Profile, TECU Bronze and Copper Wall Cladding


The OrbThe description of works in the Supreme Court Tender documents states the buildings as

...National Monuments where all the work shall stand as evidence of the country’s best endeavours, unable to be faulted and fit to be viewed with pride by present and future generations”.

The concept of the new Court emerged from the idea of the Court as “Seed of a new tradition in New Zealand Law”. The spiralling diamond pattern of the façade symbolizes the cone of the Kauri tree.  

Essentially there were two parts to this project.  Part one required fabricating traditional standing-seam metal roofing to restore the 128 year old brick Wellington High Court building, and roofing and cladding to the new connecting two level building.  Part two required the Classic Metal team to work closely with Warren & Mahoney Architects to realize their concept for the elliptical orb which houses the Supreme Court.

Points of Interest

PART ONE: Restoration of the Old High Court


Supreme court roofThe restoration of the original High Court required installation of 1300 square metres of VM Zinc Pigmento Red standing seam roofing on nine separate roof areas of the old building. The new building also required an additional 910 square metres of VM Pigmento Zinc standing seam roofing along with 170 square metres of wall cladding to the roof plant room. The VM Pigmento Zinc product is pre-weathered but will continue to weather and produce very attractive tones over time.

This project was, at the time, the first VM Pigmento Zinc job in New Zealand and the largest single consignment for VM Pigmento Zinc anywhere in the world.


PART TWO: New Supreme Court – ‘The Orb’


Orb Copper Hook Seam roofThe New Supreme Court itself is housed within an elliptical orb structure inside the new main building. The curving walls of the Courtroom pass up from the ground floor, through the first floor, then on up through the roof itself. The apex is clad with copper and topped with stained and etched glass skylight.

The Classic Metal roofing and cladding team were responsible for cladding this orb with diamond shaped copper and bronze shingles to emulate the pattern of a Kauri tree cone.   The interior cladding utilized KME TECU Bronze and the exterior of the orb was constructed in KME TECU Copper. These materials were chosen for their durability, colour and patina that will form over time.

Utilizing the hook seam cladding system our Classic Metal team of specialist craftsmen installed over 2200 diamond shaped shingles. Because it is an elliptical orb rather than spherical, and the vertical panel set-out converges at a single point on the roof, the panels curve dramatically into this apex point and at the same time reduce in size.  From the first floor where the panels are approximately 1.5 x 700mm wide, the lines converge and the panels become as small as 1.0m x 250mm wide at the apex.  Therefore every panel is unique and had to be hand measured, cut and folded individually to form the skin of the orb. 

As the specialist roofing company engaged by Mainzeal to work on the highest Court in the land, the Aquaheat roofing crew relished the opportunity to work on a project of such magnitude and historical significance.

Classic Metal team onsite at the Orb Panel manufacture for the Orb

Supreme Court aerial view


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