Rotorua Police Station

When the previous Rotorua Police Station, built in 1967 became unfit for purpose, RDT Pacific was engaged as the Project Manager for the station’s Stage 2 redevelopment.

The new, purpose-built Police Station and District Headquarters has increased efficiency by enabling operational synergies among units, reduced risks to staff and community through inappropriate facilities, and increased interaction among staff, partner agencies and the Rotorua community. It includes approximately 3,700 m2 of new space over three levels.

The building represents Rotorua’s people and history in a contemporary way. Its design references Māori architecture, treating the building as a living organism and providing a human-scaled entry. The main façade is cloaked in a perforated metal sheet screen, designed by a Te Arawa artist to represent a korowai or cloak. Vertical pre-cast elements along the street frontage open or close the building to public view and evoke the protective wooden palisades of a Māori pā.

The business case prepared by RDT Pacific was approved by former Minister of Police, Judith Collins, with specialist input from a building contractor sought as early as possible.

The station is an Importance Level 4 building – designed to remain fully functional after a disaster. One of just a handful of Aotearoa New Zealand buildings to do so, it incorporates low damage, self-centering PRESSS (Pre-cast Seismic Structural Systems) technology, to accommodate seismic movement within the structure without damage.


The main building is exceeding expectations. It enables natural synergies among teams, it’s safer, thanks to a fit-for-purpose layout; and it encourages interaction with partner agencies and the community. It’s also highly flexible to change and growth and represents a sound investment through reduced operating expenses and optimised value. This flagship Police Station is already an iconic presence in the centre of Rotorua City. The new premises offer local police an opportunity to ‘do a whole lot of things better’: to better serve victims of crime, the general public and each other.
New Zealand Police
Joseph McGowan, Police Project Director

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