The Beehive is the common name for the Executive Wing of the New Zealand Parliament Buildings, located at the corner of Molesworth Street and Lambton Quay, Wellington. It is so-called because of its shape is reminiscent of that of a traditional woven form of beehive known as a "skep". It is registered as a Category I heritage building by Heritage New Zealand.
Scottish architect Sir Basil Spence provided the original conceptual design of the Beehive in 1964. The detailed architectural design was undertaken by the New Zealand government architect Fergus Sheppard, and structural design of the building was undertaken by the Ministry of Works. The Beehive was built in stages between 1969 and 1979.
Facts and Figures :
The building is ten storeys (72 m) high and has four floors below ground. The entrance foyer's core is decorated with marble floors, stainless steel mesh wall panels, and a translucent glass ceiling.
The Beehive's brown roof is constructed from 20 tonnes of hand-welted and seamed copper. It has developed a naturally weathered appearance. A tunnel leads from the building under Bowen Street, linking the Beehive with parliamentary offices in Bowen House. The Beehive is extensively decorated with New Zealand art.The top floor is occupied by the Cabinet room, with the Prime Minister's offices on the ninth floor (and part of the eighth). Other floors contain the offices of cabinet ministers.
Free guided tours lasting up to one hour as well as educational visits for students are available. They cost $15 for children (14 and under) and $20 for adults.