Blue Spring Water Park

New Zealand: Putaruru town

2002 and 2009, Iain Trousdell and team.

The South Waikato District Council wanted an inviting and beautiful waterpark to enliven and refocus the township of Putaruru and to attract more rest stops amongst the many thousands of cars that travel through the town on the main road north to Auckland.

Design Brief

  • Make the Water Park interactive yet safe for children of all ages to play in and around, thereby making it a ‘watering place’ for family stopovers on trips north and south.
  • Create a celebration of the Blue Spring, the source of Putaruru’s world famous crystal clear spring water and Coca Cola’s bottled PUMP water
  • Incorporate Maori design themes.
  • Design to be coordinated with the 1950’s famous heritage Post Office building architecture.
  • Incorporate further mosaic tiling and woodwork which has become a feature of the town.
  • Ensure the project was designed and installed with significant Putaruru community involvement.

The projects was successful in these aims and continues to be the recognized central feature for the highway traffic running through the town, as well as a place for Putaruru townsfolk to relax in and be proud of.


“People are happy to admit they come from Putaruru again!” Norm Baker, SWDC Councillor

The Blue Spring Waterpark is “a place for people to relax and congregate and enjoy the basic pleasure of flowing water – we have a town centre again.” Mel Embling, Manager of Pride of Putaruru Business Association

“The moment she pushed the button and the water feature came into life, kids were drawn to the water like eels to play in the swirling pools and run up and down the boulders in the stream bed.” (re official opening by Prime Minister Helen Clarke, April 20th 2002).

“The Waterpark has become a symbol of Putaruru’s community spirit. The support has been overwhelming. People have taken a real pride in the park.” Sue Arthur, Director of Services, South Waikato District Council

“The Waterpark is the key to the town’s overall economic development. If a town presents itself well, it creates a good first impression.” John van Dyk, Chair of Putaruru’s CBD working party