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Another step forward for Whale Song project in Paraparaumu

Seven 1/10th scale models of a family of humpback whales are on view inside Coastlands Shoppingtown in Paraparaumu.

The whales give viewers an idea of what the actual life-size pod of bronze sculptured humpback whales will look like inside a new central park called Wharemaukau located in the heart of Paraparaumu.

Artistic impression of Wharemauku. Graphic / Tilt Architecture and Ra Vincent

Pride of place in the park will be the Whale Song project featuring the eye-catching whales ranging in size from 8m to 24m.

Whale Song is an inspirational public sculpture and community education project reflecting the district's proximity to the coast, early whaling and marine environment.

And by getting close to the sculptures it will give visitors a better understanding for the need for marine conservation, ensuring a thriving ocean and a healthy planet for future generations.

The proposed sculptural works would also enhance the district's artistic reputation as well as become a drawcard to the Kāpiti district adding to its identity and continued economic resilience.

Artistic impression of Whale Song. Graphic / Tilt Architecture and Ra Vincent

Fundraising is well under way for the project which will also feature a proposed cultural centre/wharenui and a Wharemauku forest nursery stream generation project.

The scale models were created from a 3D printer, under the watchful eye of Cees Bergenhenegouwen, before being sandpapered and spraypainted by Mike Fuller and Meredith Ross-James.

Cees said the scale models were "beautiful".

"Now you can get an idea of what it will like in the nearby future."

Meredith said the scale models looked "amazing".

"When people walk past the Whale Song information centre [in Coastlands] they don't really get an idea of what the project is and what it's going to look like.

"But this is a great way of showing them.

"They see it, they get interested, and they want to learn more."

1/10th scale model of whales. Photo / David Haxton

Mike said it took a year to get the scale models completed.

"Hopefully Kāpiti will buy into Whale Song and take ownership of it and we can all benefit from the big picture.

"I'm excited about it.

"I'd like to thank Coastlands for getting in behind it and I can't thank Marco Zeeman enough.

"He's driven this project with great tenacity."

Also in Coastlands is a replica of a blue whale's heart which is on loan from Te Papa.

Honor and Peyton Norman, aged 7 and 13, from Paraparaumu, inside a replica blue whale's heart. Photo / David Haxton

"The biggest whale in Whale Song is 24m so the heart gives people a sense of scale of what it's going to be like," Zeeman said.


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