David Turner

Senior Lecturer
Location: Building 001, Room 2037- 9

Professional memberships

NZIA Academic Member
Architects Registration Board (UK) 


David has taught and practised architecture in the UK and New Zealand. Originally from Dunedin, he qualified as an architect and lecturer at Manchester University, before setting up a practice, Tektus Architects, in Bath, following a successful competition entry for a town centre development in southern England. The practice developed a reputation in housing and in urban conservation projects in several historic British cities. He returned to New Zealand to join the staff of the new School of Architecture at Unitec. David’s teaching activities include urban planning and housing design at post-graduate level, and the development of new approaches to environmentally sustainable construction. His PhD studies and research work have led to commissioned Best Practice reports for higher density housing design for Housing New Zealand, and to advising Auckland Council on intensification planning and the effects of increased density through his work with the city’s Urban Design Panel.

Supervised thesis projects

Pauling, Craig (2016). Further down the track
West, Ashley (2016). Filling the blanks : a suburban opportunity for wellbeing
Young, Harriett (2016). Long live the state house : an investigation into the possibilities of retrofit solutions to existing problems with post-war state houses
Chan, Rebecca (2016). Intensifying cities : an exploration into methods of transitioning Auckland into higher densities
Charoenkitkamjorn, Angsarin (2016). Thinking outside the (retail) box
Paterson, Sam (2016-06-20). Living in the shadow of the most liveable city : an exploration of unliveable sites
Zhang, Jinghua (2015). High density housing
Tyrrell, Nina (2015). Karangahape Road train station : an urban catalyst for revitalisation
Reynolds, Travers John (2015). In a Christchurch frame of mind
Kostiuk-Warren, J. Max (2015). A home today, designed for tomorrow : a home which can be added onto, subtracted from, and adapted as our lives change over time
Foote, Scott (2015). Circulation, nature, connection : breaking down institutional barriers to biophilic healing
Brokenshire, Mark David (2015). City living : a residential development in central Christchurch
Basri, Niniek P. (2015). The North Bali International Airport
Jordan, Jonathan (2014). City stitch : a study into how architecture can repair damaged urban fabric to create a vibrant urban environment
Richardson, Marcus (2014). The St. James : the theatre perfect that always performs in character
Curtis, Joshua (2014). Coastal callback : an architectural research project exploring the fundamental relationship between New Zealand's built and coastal environments.
Mann, Marie-Louise (2014). The liveable superblock
Kully, Megan (2014). Solo in the city : restructuring space, privacy, and autonomy in housing for a contemporary solo demographic
Suznjevic, Ana (2013). Fantasy and reality : design for dementia
Shi, Yuan (2013). Architecture as nature
Yelavich, Nicole (2013). Sustainable housing for ordinary households : a design study for Auckland's shortage of affordable housing, Geddes Terrace, Avondale
Locke, Adam (2013). Feed the fish
Cookson, Gemma (2013). Occupying the edge : Christchurch urban housing
Nicholls, Naeri Robin (2013). Sustaining Maori culture through the representation of tribal history in architecture : Tirohia - Te Marae Karewa
Howdle, Natasha (2012). Identity and architecture : the impact of urban intensification
Heidari, Mahzad Kian (2012). Suburban metamorphosis : an urban intervention into suburban fabric
Grounds, Meagan. (2012). Variations : flexibility and adaptability in medium density housing
Wasek, Rafal (2012-10-29). Through the looking glass : an alternative modern history of Takapuna
Badham, Terry Marie Christopher (2011). Papakainga te whau o te matauranga : hei ronaki wa i te ao Maori ki a puawai he oranga hou hei kitenga tangata
Brennan, Charlotte (2010). Modernism : A contemporary interpretation (Revisiting one of Auckland's Modernist housing developments)
Mahdavi, Hanieh (2010). Fusion of contemporary architecture with historic Persian elements
Mazey, Jason (2009). The sustainable New Lynn neighbourhood 2020: Balancing environmental efficiency and sufficiency with the quality of social life


Turner, D. F. (2015). Whole building recycling as a waste reduction practice. In M. Panko and L. Kestle, Building Today - Saving Tomorrow: Construction And Deconstruction Conference.

Turner, D.F. (2014). Contingent interpretations: unreliable memories in stories of New Zealand architecture. in C. Schnoor (ed.), Proceedings of the Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand: 31, Translation, Auckland, New Zealand: SAHANZ and Unitec ePress; and Gold Coast, Queensland: SAHANZ, 2014.

Murphy, C., Wake, S. J., Turner, D., McConchie, G., and Rhodes, D. (2010). On the edge: Cross-disciplinary & intra-disciplinary connections in architectural science. Conference Proceedings (Book/CD-Rom) of the 44th Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Architectural Science Association. Departments of Architecture & Landscape Architecture, Unitec: Auckland, New Zealand.

Turner, D. F. (2010). Compacting Suburbia: a case for moving buildings. Murphy C., Wake S.J.,Turner D., McConchie G., Rhodes D. (Eds). On the edge. Conference Proceedings of the 44th Annual Conference of the Australian and New Zealand Architectural Science Association (ANZASCA 2010).

Turner, D. F. (2010). Planning for higher density: Habits of privacy in Auckland's culture of housing. Doctor of Philosophy in Planning, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.

Turner, D. (2009). What time is this place? Scala Seminar Series.

Turner, D. F. (2009). Integrating education and industry: the academic perspective. Re-informing concepts of sustainability in theory & practice of Architecture: a symposium to review current positions, Unitec Institute of Technology, Department of Architecture. 9 October.

Turner, D. F., and Su, B. (2006). Economics and design in medium density housing. Proceedings of ANZAScA 2006 - Challenges for Architectural Science in Changing Climates (40th Annual Conference of the Architectural Science Association ANZAScA), University of Adelaide, Australia.

Turner, D., & Su, B. (2005). A classification methodology for medium density housing based on site layout analysis. In H. Skates, L. Christie, A. Rogerson, A. Melling, & A. Tonks (Eds.), Unofficial proceedings of the 39th Annual Architectural Science Association Conference 'Fabricating sustainability' (CD Rom ed., pp. 13). Wellington: Victoria University. Paper presented at the 39th Annual Conference of the Architectural Science Association 'Fabricating sustainability', 17-19 November, Wellington.

Su, B., Turner, D., Hewitt, J., & Wagner, C. (2005). Case study of medium and high density housing development in Auckland region. In S. Pratt & C. E. Davies (Eds.), The 5th Asia Pacific Conference on Sustainable Energy and Environmental Technologies, proceedings (pp. 74-79). Palmerston North: Massy University. Paper presented at the APCSEET 2005 Conference, 8-11 May, Wellington.

Su, B., Turner, D., Hewitt, J., & Wagner, C. (2005). Study of sustainable medium and high density housing development. In T. Hara (Ed.), 'Collaboration and harmonisation in creative systems', Proceedings of the 3rd International Structural Engineering and Construction conference (Vol. 1, pp. 453-459). London: Taylor & Francis Group. Paper presented at the 3rd International Structural Engineering and Construction Conference (ISEC-03), 20-23 September, Shunan, Japan.

Turner, D., Hewitt, J., Wagner, C., Su, B., & Davies, K. (2004). Best practice in medium density housing design (Report to Housing New Zealand Corporation). Auckland, New Zealand.