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Artspost and Waikato Museum

River Plan Objective: To enhance Hamilton’s key arts and cultural zone and strengthen its connection to the river.

River Plan Projects:

  • Promote development of the ArtsPost site to compliment the Museum
  • Support development of a world-class arts themed hotel by the river
  • Develop a sculpture walk that enriches the river path
  • Provide links to the city using existing and new pathways between buildings
  • Develop festival experiences or light exhibitions
  • Connect Ferrybank with the arts, culture and entertainment areas of the central city

History: Waikato Museum of Art and History opened in 1987 after years of planning and debate surrounding the need for a combined regional

museum and art gallery. The name of the institution has since been changed to Waikato Museum - Te Whare Taonga O Waikato. This is partly to reflect an increased focus on Maaori heritage and culture. ArtsPost is located next to the Museum and occupies Hamilton’s former Post and Telegraph office, built in 1901. The Council purchased the building in 1992 to create a high profile facility for promotion of visual arts.

Maaori significance: Hamilton and the surrounding districts were developed on the traditional lands of several Waikato-Tainui hapu. Below the area where Waikato Museum stands was a canoe landing site called Te Korokoro. This site got its name from a fresh water spring believed to have curative powers. War canoes (waka taua) were often beached at Te Korokoro to be repaired. Immediately opposite Waikato Museum was a pa called Tetarahi, home to a sub-tribe of Ngati Wairere called Parekirangi.

Focus of visual arts and local culture
Social spaces with improved links to the central city