Photo: Chair Jamie Tulloch (far left), Directors Steve Spencer (left) and Jake Lane (far right) celebrate the official opening of the Stake Glass processing plant with Rt Hon John Key in Christchurch.
A new $10 million purpose-built glass processing plant being officially opened tomorrow is a strong vote of faith and confidence in the future of the city.
The Stake Glass complex, in Distribution Lane, Sockburn, was designed by Chilton + Mayne Architecture Ltd, of Ashburton, and built by Stake Consulting, with space for future expansion. Stake Glass currently employs 20 fulltime staff, with plans to hire more staff as the company expands.
Director Jake Lane says the new plant will meet a growing need for glass in both the residential and commercial building sectors throughout the South Island, and especially in Christchurch since the earthquakes.
“The decision to invest in this new plant came as a result of continual feedback from the market about delays and the impact on builds and so the opportunity was there for us to take all our knowledge and experience and build a plant and service model that clients and customers would welcome and back.”
“Hold-ups for glass can have a big impact on an overall build timeline and therefore cost and that’s where our service model and fleet of delivery trucks comes into play. It’s all integrated and we take responsibility for getting the product to our clients and customers when they need it and without those costly delays,” says Jake Lane.
“There’s still many years of development and builds in the central CBD as well as right around the city in the commercial, industrial and residential sectors. There’s also growing demand from Queenstown and Wanaka that Stake Glass can now easily service.”
Jake Lane says glass is the perfect material for the Christchurch rebuild. “Look around the CBD, there’s glass everywhere. It’s energy efficient; it brings light into the buildings. People love working in clear open workspaces. It’s architectural – there’s lots of different things that people love about glass.”
He says modern glass is a lot stronger than the glass used in the past in Christchurch, with toughened and laminated glass and many different specialised glasses now available.
The furnace is unique in Christchurch, says Stake Glass Operations Manager Jon Cole. “It’s probably the best furnace in New Zealand, definitely in the South Island, for the ability to deal with low-e glass, emissivity glasses, and energy-efficient glass, so we can process what others can’t.”
Stake Glass Chair Jamie Tulloch says the new plant is good news for the city as the decision has been made not just because of rebuild opportunities but also the South Island construction market in general.
“This investment is good for the local economy and there are growing numbers of builders and construction firms that want to source locally – and it also means they can literally see their glass being processed. With Stake Glass, you’re dealing with the owners of the company and not some remote organization where you’re dealing with a call centre and not sure who is actually looking after you and your order. With Stake Glass, it’s all right here on your door-step.”
Stake Consulting has also studied innovative ways from around the globe to undertake repairs, including the use of carbon fibre, epoxy injection, and ground-penetrating radar.
Jamie Tulloch says the investment, the technology and innovation, and the hands-on role of the owners will be the key to the success of Stake Glass.