Theme: "Touching the Earth Lightly"

Auckland, November 2013


DESIGN MATTERS - Creating The Bliss Point in Architecture and Engineering

What is it that creates and defines great design? Why is the iPhone a design classic and yet the Samsung Galaxy is not?  Alastair will explore the drivers of great design and how it relates to architecture and engineering through the principles of lightness, sustainability and social awareness.  Using the analogy of the 'bliss point' within the design context we will explore using real projects the perfect combination of the physical, environmental, social, physiological and emotional definers that are behind great architecture.

This Keynote Address will be given by Alistair Richardson of Cox Architecture. 

Alistair Richardson is one of Australia’s most experienced sports architects with over 18 years experience in the development, design and delivery of complex sports facilities. His work has been recognized internationally with numerous architectural and industry awards. Alistair is a regular contributor to conferences and international publications.

Alistair is passionate about designing quality public assembly buildings and spaces that create a unique sense of place to enhance the fan experience and social interaction. Alistair’s in depth knowledge of the impact of design on revenue generation at public venues combined with a passion for the integration of technology into buildings has led to the creation of some of Australasia’s leading stadia. 

Alistair joined Cox Architecture as a national Director and Director of Cox Sport in 2010 after being a Senior Principal and Director of Populous and HOK Sport.

Taiyo Birdair do Brasil has recently completed tensile fabric roofs for 3 new stadiums in Brazil.  Fonte Nova (Salvador) and Estadio Nacional (Brasilia) were both significant rebuilds of existing stadiums.  At Mineirao Stadium (Belo Horizonte) the existing concrete cantilever roof, dating from the 1960’s, was extended by 25m to increase the covered seating. Important features of the design and construction of these roofs will be covered in this presentation.

Mike Lester, Managing Director of MakMax Australia will be giving the presentation.

New Opening Stadium Roof over Margaret Court Arena, Melbourne Park

As a result of the growing popularity of the Australian Open, the existing 6000 seat open air Margaret Court Arena is to be enlarged to a 7500 seat, year-round entertainment venue. The crowning feature of the venue will be the sleek operable roof which can be opened or closed in under five minutes, housing an arena suitable for tennis, basketball, netball and concert events. The operable roof allows international-standard “outdoor” tennis to be played, as well as providing the capacity to hang theatrical equipment for indoor concerts.

This presentation will focus on the structural design aspects of the roof and the challenges faced by the design team to provide the design within a restricted height envelope.  The operable roof added complexity and Peter will touch on the multitudes of considerations required for its design.

The presentation will be given by Peter Murenu.

Peter Murenu is a Technical Director and Structural Engineer of Aurecon.  Peter has over 19 years consulting engineering experience specialising in the design (from concept through to detailed design) of major and complex projects including stadia, commercial, entertainment, rail related, institutional and heavy industrial schemes

The type of structures built for the recent London Olympics were radically different from those of the earlier Sydney Olympics. The facilities for both events were intended to be constructed in an "environmentally friendly manner". The Sydney structures essentially banned the use of fabrics whereas in London it was embraced.

Many of the London structures could be resized, relocated and reused - critical aspects of the conference theme "Touching the Earth Lightly".

The presentation will be given by Farid Sahnoune of Ferrari.

S2C London 19

The presentation will cover the conceptual ideas behind choosing the waka as the perfect venue for this project including the Maori protocols with choosing such a design.

Design Brief

  • Major Event focus
  • Visitor focus
  • Construction and Deconstruction requirements
  • Ease of storage
  • Ease of Transport
  • Future use for events
  • Design expertise that were met by Structurflex and Compusoft


  • The tribe
  • The funding organisations

The reality and actual experience

  • Rugby World Cup
  • Economic, Cultural and Social outputs
  • TeamNZ

In 2011 Creative Spaces was commissioned to design a cover for proposed new netball courts at Westlake Girls High School in Auckland.  This presentation will cover the design of the project from initial concept to the completion of construction.

S2E Harry 16

The presentation will be given by Harry Street.