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nigel j gilkison

NZCD (Arch), BAS, MA Urban Design (Distinction)


Nigel Gilkison is a highly experienced Urban Designer with an extensive background in Architecture and more than 20 years experience working both in New Zealand and internationally. Nigel was born in South Canterbury, New Zealand and holds both a New Zealand and British passport.

Nigel possesses a wide range of design and technical skills and knowledge gained from his significant experience working with high profile architectural and urbanism practices. His particular specialisms are in the design and delivery of large, mixed-use urban development masterplans, architectural concept design and the production of design codes, frameworks and guidelines.

Nigel has extensive masterplanning experience including developing and implementing strategic design visions, running design workshops and coordinating consultant teams, client liaison, public consultation, and is a specialist in developing, maintaining and reviewing urban design codes.

Nigel also possesses a thorough understanding of historical architecture and is classically literate with an appreciation of the social and economic value of preserving heritage assets.


Nigel gained his first tertiary qualification as an architectural technician (NZCD Arch), and subsequently worked for two years in Christchurch (Wilkie & Bruce Architects) followed by two years working in London (Iain MacDonald Arquitectura Diseno).

He returned to New Zealand in 1995 to study for a Bachelor of Architecture Science (BAS), at Auckland School of Architecture, followed by study towards a Bachelor of Architecture (BArch). Whilst studying he also designed and built a house for his parents, in their home town of Temuka and in 1996/7 and also worked in Hong Kong on a short-term contract, over a summer break, with Atelier Pacific (with Nic Banks, formerly of Norman Foster & Partners).

In 2000, Nigel took up a new position in Wellington, working with Christopher Kelly & James Fenton at Architecture Workshop, a practice based on the Renzo Piano ‘Building Workshop’ philosophy.

Nigel returned to the United Kingdom in 2002 where he began working with internationally renowned classical architecture/urbanism practice Robert Adam Architects (renamed Adam Architecture/Urbanism in 2010), where he was employed as an Associate for over 12 years, working as a senior leader of the urban masterplanning team.

In 2007 Nigel moved to Edinburgh, where he operated as a self-employed urban design consultant to Robert Adam Architects, overseeing the of implementation and delivery of the Western and Granton Harbour masterplans and also consulting to international Planning practice GVA Grimley on a variety of projects across Scotland, including a winning design competition entries for a new masterplan for John O’Groats and a new residential development for Glasgow's west end.

In 2009 Nigel returned to full time employment with Adam Architecture and in 2011 he completed a post-graduate Masters degree in Urban Design at Portsmouth University. In 2015, Nigel returned to NZ to pursue his career in his homeland, where he worked for one year as an Urban Design Specialist with Auckland Council, before moving back to his home town of temuka to set up his own practice.

professional memberships + affiliations...

New Zealand Institute of Architects (Affiliate member since 2015)
The Princes Foundation for Building Community (UK - member since 2011)
International Network for Traditional Building, Architecture & Urbanism (UK - member since 2012)
Historic Places Aotearoa (member since 2013)
Urban Design Forum (member since 2014)
Historic Places Mid Canterbury (committee member since 2014)
Heritage New Zealand (member since 2013)
Timaru Civic Trust (board member since 2016)
Christchurch Civic Trust (member since 2016)
Southern Heritage Trust (member since 2016)

Flat A, 176A Wai-iti Road, Timaru, South Canterbury, New Zealand... mob:021 210 7374...