The Horse and Trap Goes High Tech

Gel Architects is pleased to be involved with the seismic upgrade of Mount Eden’s Horse & Trap Tavern located on Enfield Street.

Built from unreinforced brickwork and featuring exposed interior timber post and beam structures, our goal is to retain the historic features and unique character of this 1900’s landmark building.

The seismic upgrade is necessary to meet funding and insurance requirements and to bring the building up to new "post Christchurch" earthquake strength standards. We are increasing the earthquake rating from its current 28% to above the required 67%.

In order to preserve the visible heritage of the building, innovative materials such as a high tech plaster ‘Flexus’ system are being used on the exterior. Inside, a diaphragm bracing system is going to strengthen the existing floors and roof. In this way new concrete and steel structural interventions have been minimised. The addition of a new western balcony will provide more outside space for the Main Bar and also reduces the strengthening required (by making the building 2 stories instead of 3 in this elevation).

The construction has been tailored to allow the main bar area to remain open whilst most of the work takes place above and below. The tavern closed for one week while exterior plaster and paint removal took place. New internal fit out work is being undertaken in conjunction with Award winning Lovelace & Co to refresh and improve the current spaces.

This neighbourhood institution is being given a new lease of life to ensure it stands the test of time and flourishes in the future.

If you would like further information regarding the upgrade of your building, we can help. Contact us on 09 368 4403 or

For more information on the Flexus strengthening system visit:

Consultant Team:

  • Architect: Gel Architects Ltd – Graeme Wrack, Peta Drost
  • Structural Engineer: Structural Design Ltd – Brendan Donnell
  • Interiors: Lovelace & Co – Pauline Blackman
  • Contractor: Waide Construction – Charlie Waide, Jason Feck, Dallas Williams
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