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Site Overview:



Hide 1

Hide 2

Hide 3

Hide 4



The FIW experience has been configured to work with the location’s natural contour. This means minimal earthworks and ensuring all paths follow gradients that ensure a fully inclusive and accessible experience.

Arriving at the Visitor Centre:


After a short stroll from the parking area guests arrive at the visitor centre.

The Visitor Centre & Nursery:


Visitor Centre & Native Plant Nursery

At the visitor centre our guests will be welcomed by our hosts and will learn about our project and the experience that they are about to become a part of. This facility includes a retail counter, indoor and outdoor interactive display spaces, and community workshop space.

The nursery will provide a suitable environment for raising seedlings, placing them in reusable and sustainable planting containers and leaving them to ‘harden’ before being taken out to be planted. This includes a naturally lit shed to store equipment, and for ‘potting up’ plants. A series of shade cloth shelters and shade cloth canopies will protect plants from direct sunlight and strong winds.

The nursery will also include toilets, and covered facilities to store parkas, gumboots and equipment for those wanting to volunteer time helping in the our restoration projects.


Green roofs, an innovative design, mimicking the landscape and being "invisible"


The visitor centre consists of three individual structures and surrounding decking construction. The roof will be overarching the entire construction to reduce visibility, even from the air.

The concept of green roofs will be applied to all structures in the project.

The values of "green' roofs

Environmental Benefits
Green roofs absorb sunlight and provide insulation, which helps lower the ambient temperature in all the buildings.
Stormwater Management:

Green roofs absorb rainwater, reducing runoff and easing the burden on drainage systems.

Green roofs provide habitat for birds, insects, and plants, supporting urban biodiversity.

Noise Reduction The soil, plants, and other materials on green roofs act as sound insulation, reducing external noise pollution.


Energy Efficiency

Green roofs provide natural insulation, reducing the need for heating and cooling, thus lowering energy costs.
Extended Roof Lifespan:

The vegetation on green roofs protects the roof membrane from UV radiation and temperature fluctuations, increasing its longevity.


Aesthetic and Recreational Benefits
Green roofs enhance the visual appeal of buildings, especially in protected natural environment such as the Hillocks.


Educational Opportunities

Green roofs can be used as educational tools to raise awareness about environmental issues and sustainable practices.


Overall, green roofs provide a range of benefits, making them an attractive choice for sustainable building design and development.

The Circuit - nothing but gravel

All visitors will be guided in small groups along a nature trail, a walking path alongside the Hillocks to see the planting work underway and to reach the four VR viewing hides.

Instead of interfering with the natural composition of the land by building elevated boarded walkways, we have decided for a compacted gravel footpath that follows a looped route through the site and which avoids wetland areas.


Our intention is to make our experience fully accessible and inclusive. The route has little or no incline, therefore being wheelchair accessible and also suitable for small electric golf-carts.

The Viewing "Hides" 


Due to the nature of VR technology and its technical requirement to control direct sunlight for having a perfect viewing experience, viewing hides are provided that allow walkers to understand the stories of this landscape, including how the Hillocks were formed, about the moa and pouakai (Haast Eagle) that used to live here, how snow and ice have shaped this landscape, and the native plants now being planted.


The hides are located along the walk and are open to the landscape on either one or two sides during opening hours, so visitors can readily see the Hillocks framed its current form.

Inside, visitors will be given VR headsets to participate on a state-of-the-art, cinematic and 360° virtual reality experience.

The viewing hides have a small footprint, allowing an occupancy of up to 20 people.


The AR - Viewing Platform


At one point along the walking path, visitor are given the option to cross over a small creek, and then walk partway up the side of the southern-most hillock to a viewing platform. From the viewing platform the upper Dart River/Te Awa Whakatipu, surrounding mountains, and glaciers can be seen. Besides the breathtaking view, visitors will have here photo opportunities, using amazing AR technology.

The path to the viewing area is a continuous boardwalk to avoid the need for any earthworks and is of a design and gradient to be fully wheelchair accessible. The rear of the viewing platform will have seats to allow the visitors to rest and reflect on their experiences so far, and the guide will talk to them about the challenges and possible solutions we are facing to keep this beautyful and outstanding natural landscape intact.

Visitors will return from the viewing area via the same path, rejoining the walk at the same point they left it.

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