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Revealed: Design for new-look Durie Hill Elevator and tunnel entrance

The design for the new Durie Hill Elevator entrance has been revealed, with Whanganui district councillors confirming a $50,000 ratepayer contribution.

The project is being led by the Whanganui Regional Heritage Trust (WRHT) which has applied for a further $300,000 in grants from other funding organisations.

The design was unveiled at Tuesday's council meeting, with trustee Bruce Falk saying the design incorporated the past and future in its look.

The new entrance will be made of low-maintenance materials including plastered concrete block walls and a concrete roof with a metal alloy pergola which rises up to the pou.


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The current structure was erected in 1976 and the pou in the new design is a nod to the its past.

It was designed by Henry Dickson, the grandson of Whanganui architect Bruce Dickson, which mayor Hamish McDouall said was exciting.

"I think it's fantastic to have the resonance come back. Bruce Dickson, who's done so much for our main street, to have his grandson present something is a very exciting inter-generational effort."

McDouall said the elevator tunnel was a significant feature of Whanganui but was in need of a spruce-up.

"I think we can't do enough to attract tourists to the elevator and to Durie Hill and to that fantastic view from the tower over the river valley," he said.

The council voted unanimously to put the $50,000 towards the project and approve the trust's business case.

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