ĀKAU designed the space for the Ngāpuhi Mobil Station in Kaikohe with a rōpu of taitamariki from Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Kaikohe. In 2018 we held a concept design workshop where the taitamariki explored local stories, the ngahere (forest), the connection of East to West and the rest of Ngāpuhi. A large central tree was the focus for many of the designs and represent the Kohekohe tree which Kaikohe is named after. The taitamariki wanted to see a space for local products to be displayed as well as the inclusion of Te Reo Māori.
2 year 13 students designed the graphics that feature in the interior space of the building. The maunga (mountain) patterns represent Te Whare Tapu o Ngāpuhi. The wheke (octopus) designs represent Kaikohe as Te Pu o Te Wheke and the heart of Ngāpuhi. The ĀKAU Studio developed these ideas to reflect Ngāpuhi and the local surroundings, with every part of the design being inspired from the creative mahi (work) of the taitamariki.