Fresh From The Field — Te Kaha – By Plato Creative
Fresh from the Field is a weekly article series sharing the fresh and inspiring work of our Aotearoa Design Assembly community.
Communicating the narrative behind the stadium’s construction and establishing a solid foundation for the facility that will host unforgettable experiences, Plato Creative share their recent branding work for Te Kaha.
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Once complete in 2026, Te Kaha will be one of New Zealand’s largest events venues, with stadium seating for over 30,000 and flexible spaces to host all kinds of events. Plato was engaged by the operators Venues Ōtautahi to create the brand’s strategy and identity, as well as website design and build.
Rooted in resilience, Te Kaha represents enduring strength and serves as a symbolic reminder of our region’s past and future. It carries the spirit of “Te Kaharoa,” the enduring strength gifted by Ngāi Tūāhuriri to name the land where Te Kaha stands. Ōtautahi Christchurch shares the significance of Te Kaha, highlighting the unbreakable connections it fosters within communities and the lasting memories it creates. This narrative formed the foundation for the brand, bringing Waitaha together.
The Design Response
The first stage of the branding process was to communicate the narrative behind the stadium’s construction, establishing a solid foundation for the facility that will host unforgettable experiences. The second stage and major challenge was being authentic to the narrative of Te Kaha with consideration of the brand working with a commercial brand in the future when completed. It had to remain neutral but strong, bold as well as inviting.
A home for the Crusaders, however much more than a sports stadium. It will home musicians, conventions, local clubs and so much more. The identity had to embrace all.
The logotype is designed to sit low and squat, mirroring the posture of a performer, while also featuring notches that evoke past experiences. The color palette is neutral and sophisticated, allowing for future sponsorship integration.
The icon is layered, primarily representing the geographical location of Te Kaha, from the South Island alps to the South East coastline. The crossing elements in-between represent embrace and work best when the icon is repeated side by side. This repetition creates a visual chain link, symbolising strength in numbers.
As the city evolves, grows and builds so too will the Te Kaha brand. Over time as construction continues for the stadium the brand will reveal more of itself. Show more personality, more energy, more passion for what will be hosted right up until Waitaha’s crown jewel anchor project is complete.
The Design Team
Tim O’Neill – Creative Lead
Fiona Murray – Copywriter Lead
Morgan Coombes – Strategic Lead
Nick Harvey – Partner
Rebecca Ryder – Client Director
Samm Abella – Designer
The Client Team