The "Taranaki Type": C.H. Moore and the "revolutionary" fresh-air classroom design


  • Natasha Naus



Moore, Charles Howard


Charles Howard Moore was the Taranaki Education Board Architect from 1920-43. During his tenure Moore developed an open-air classroom design that he called the "Taranaki type"; a design that he claimed was an improvement on the "Fendalton type" of Christchurch. The first Taranaki "fresh air classroom" was opened in New Plymouth in 1928. The "Taranaki type" embraced the principles of natural light and fresh air in an innovative and thoughtful way that took into consideration climatic conditions and the needs of the users. Moore's distinctive design dominated classroom construction throughout the Taranaki region and many of them continue to be used for educational purposes. The New Zealand Historic Places Trust has registered examples of the Taranaki fresh-air classroom and many have been identified by local councils for their architectural and technological values. However, little has been written about CH Moore - his life, training, experiences, and influences. Was he a lone practitioner of the open-air design? Was his design "revolutionary"? Were his classrooms successful? Utilising a variety of archival sources, genealogical research, and comparative analysis, this paper will reveal a more detailed picture of CH Moore and examine his contribution to the design of educational buildings in New Zealand.


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2011-01-01 — Updated on 2021-09-06


How to Cite

Naus, N. (2021). The "Taranaki Type": C.H. Moore and the "revolutionary" fresh-air classroom design. Architectural History Aotearoa, 8, 36–46. (Original work published January 1, 2011)