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Fendalton substation

Fendalton main district substation
Fendalton main district substation. Creator (cre): Municipal Electricity Department, Donor (dnr): Orion New Zealand. © Orion New Zealand

Designed by Charles S. Luney, the substation on the corner of Weka Street and Tui Street was built in 1948.

Built in 1948 on the corner of Weka Street and Tui Street, Fendalton, the substation was designed by Charles S. Luney Ltd for £8210. This was the last substation design of the period to be under the control of Christchurch City Council architects rather than Municipal Electricity Department draughtsmen.

A pitched roof, brick facing to the concrete structure, a front porch and rows of steel-framed windows create the impression of an over-scaled suburban residence. Decoration is restricted to simple, recessed brickwork and a border of glazed tiles at the doorway. An obvious influence is that of Dutch modernism seen in the combination of a traditional building material, brick, with a modernist simplification of form and reduction of elements. Dutch modernism was much favoured in Britain from the 1930s and used widely in New Zealand over the 1940s and 1950s for domestic, commercial and public architecture.