In early September, we will shift from our current waterfront location (1 Dawson Street) to the exciting new building on the corner of Dawson and King Streets—close to the heart of the city.
“The move is only 300 metres, but the shift represents a 143-year-long commitment to innovation and investment in the future,” says Govett Quilliam CEO Sophie Braggins. “The way we work, communicate and connect with our clients continues to change and Govett Quilliam is evolving to meet the needs of the Taranaki community and our people.”
“Since 1996, we’ve had this beautiful seaside location, so why are we moving? It all stems from our mission to create an experience that serves our clients and inspires our talented team of legal professionals.”
The new building and GQ’s tenancy will feature a welcoming lobby, private meeting rooms, dynamic collaborative working spaces, a wellness area, EV charging in the car park, and a technology-enabled seminar room for public workshops and presentations. Braggins says the ground floor tenancies will further enhance the collaborative and hospitable nature of the premises.
Murali Bhaskar, of Boon Team Architects who designed the GQ portion of the building’s interior, explains that the fitout will set a new benchmark for legal workplace design.
“Most people are sitting in closed offices in law firms,” explains Murali. “I don’t like to use the term open plan but the unique aspects of GQ’s new design are the activity-based workspaces. You’re no longer confined to an office or a desk; you’ve got freedom to work in a way that is most suitable for your task or your client.”
Adapting to the needs of our clients has been a hallmark of GQ’s practice since 1876 when the Taranaki Herald announced the original opening: “We have much pleasure in welcoming back to New Plymouth Mr C.W. Govett … for the purpose of practising his profession [law] in this town.” Then, in 1900, The Daily News announced that Clement Govett was taking on a law partner, James Henry Quilliam, describing that the union has created “much satisfaction” in the community and that it promises to be “mutually advantageous to themselves and to their clients”.
This was the genesis of one of New Zealand’s longest-running law firms that has gone on to serve Taranaki in everything from property conveyancing to complex war tribunals and from personal family matters to the public concerns of supporting the region’s Health Board, local government and numerous charities and not-for-profits.
Being on the site of the old NZ Post building and warehouse, the new build incorporates much of that original structure. It’s an innovative building project that builds on the past and this mirrors perfectly the way our team at GQ view the move. “We’re taking a big step forward into the future, whilst also protecting the values that have defined the firm for a century and a half”.
“It’s our vision that this building will support our efforts to grow and innovate whilst also remaining connected to the people of our region,” says Sophie Braggins.
To echo the words used by The Daily News 119 years ago, we hope this move will be mutually advantageous for our team, clients and the Taranaki community.
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