The Futuro House

The Futuro House was conceived by Matti Suuronen in 1968 as a "portable" ski chalet. It is an iconic piece of architecture and this site is devoted to documenting the history of the Futuro and the current status and whereabouts of the remaining examples.





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Location Information

Futuro Harwood - Nick Te Paa - 101213



Info, History, Photos


Update 071319

This photo was posted to Facebook 062019 by Judith Foster in a comment on a post to the Facebook page "50's 60's 70's & 80's Living in Christchurch".

Judith identified the Futuro's location as Fordingbridge Lane, one of the previous locations of this Futuro, and, though it is a little unclear due to the resolution of the photo, there is a street sign for Fordingbridge Lane visible in the photo.

The photo shows a fully assembled Futuro either being placed or removed so the assumption would be that it either arrived at or left this location by road in a fully assembled state.

Futuro - Fordingbridge Lane - Judith Foster - facebook 062019

Update 041914

These two photographs show a Futuro in a location and setting that are unfamiliar to us; we do not recall ever having seen this location before.

Cathedral Square, Christchurch, New Zealand  - 080807/1

Cathedral Square, Christchurch, New Zealand  - 080807/2

The images were referenced by Corran Lindsay in a 110512 comment on a 012312 posting titled "Aliens Have Landed on Pensacola Beach" on Barbara Shallue's excellent photography blog "Confessions Of A Photography Addict". Links to the actual photos attributed them to horrid (we cannot find any contact information for horrid; if these are your photos please let us know so we can provide appropriate attribution)

Corran's comment indicates that the photographs are of a Futuro House that was displayed as a part of an Animation Festival in Cathedral Square, Christchurch, New Zealand. The comment does not include timing of this festival though the naming of the images themselves suggests they were taken 080807.

While nothing in the comment indicates that the photographs are of this specific Futuro the evidence strongly suggests that this is the case and that likely the Futuro was displayed as a part of this festival after being displayed at the Christchurch Botanic Gardens and prior to being placed at its current location.

There are several reasons we might draw this conclusion. The first is the timing; assuming that the naming of the images does actually reflect the date they were taken, 080807, then the timing is compatible with the known history of this Futuro House. The unit was on display at the Botanic Gardens through the first part of 2007; most reports we have come across suggest it was there Dec 2006 to Feb 2007 but there are photographs taken as late as 032007 so the unit was certainly in the Botanic Gardens until at least that date. The earliest evidence of the unit being at its current location we have come across is Google Earth imagery from 022608 so this unit could have been in Cathedral Square on 080807.

In addition the other known New Zealand Futuros (with a couple of exceptions) can definitively be placed at their locations both prior to and after 080807. Most are some distance from Christchurch and the likelihood of the Cathedral Square unit being one of the other units transported in and then returned to their original location is less likely than it being this unit.

The only units we cannot place at their current location prior to 080807 are the Paringa River Futuro (a remote location over 300 miles by road from Christchurch) and the Invercargill Futuro (a disassembled unit in storage and some 400 or so miles by road from Christchurch). All in all it seems very likely the Cathedral Square unit was this one based on timing and known history of Futuros in New Zealand.

There is also the photographic evidence. Consider these two photos (click the photos for higher res images) of the Botanic Gardens unit ready for transport and the Cathedral Square unit and note:
Christchurh Botanic Gardens Futuro Ready For Transport

Cathedral Square, Christchurch, New Zealand  - 080807/1

Secondly consider these two photographs of the interiors of the two units. Note in the right photograph the "Futuro shaped" placards below the windows; clearly a part of the "display" of the Futuro House. In the left picture note the same under the very right window in the shot. It looks as if the unit likely moved from the Botanic Gardens to Cathedral Square with exactly the same display materials remaining in place.

Cathedral Square, Christchurch, New Zealand  - 080807/1

Christchurch Botanic Gardens Interior

On balance we have to conclude that this unit made a stop at Cathedral Square between the time it left the Botanic Gardens and the time it arrived at its current location.

Update 112813

A Facebook post of 101213 shared this photo from the Facebook Group 80's - 90's Hangouts Christchurch New Zealand via Nick Te Paa. The Futuro remains at its current location and, as it has been for quite some time, it is still up for sale.

Futuro, Christchurch - 101213

Seems like this is not too surprising; commenting on another Facebook post of 080313 Nick McQuoid (owner of three Futuros - see here and here) notes that the owners are looking for $260K for the unit. At that price it could be staying exactly where it is right now for some time to come.

Update 081212

Thanks to some info provided by Achim Breiling we now know that this Futuro was located at 6 Fordingbridge Ln, Bexley, Christchurch 8061, New Zealand prior to it being moved to the Botanic Gardens sometime 2006.

Update 080912

King House Removals have kindly given us permission to display two very cool photos of the Futuro loaded up and ready for road transport from Christchurch to Harewood.

Futuro, Christchurch - Harewood Transport 1

Futuro, Christchurch - Harewood Transport 2

Original Information 100411

This Futuro was located at the Christchurch Botanic Garden for a few months at the end of 2006 and was moved to its current location in 2007; we have not yet been able to ascertain where it was located prior to the Botanic Garden.

The Futuro is currently in storage at the Christchurch Yard of King House Removals; the company that was also responsible the transport of the Futuro between locations. In a comment on a post on the blog Christchurch Modern the result of a phone call to the company to try to get some additional information is reported as the following one liner:

"it's in storage on behalf of a private owner."

King House Removals display a couple of cool images of the Futuro on a truck during transport on their website. It is unclear whether the images are from the transport to or from the Botanic Garden though it would be reasonable to assume the same company transported the Futuro using the same method on both occasions. The images are 9 and 9.1 in the gallery.

The only photo of this Futuro in this location of which we are aware is an image attached to a 101908 blog post on the site Christchurch Modern, if you are aware of any others please let us know".

An interesting side note to this Futuro is that during the time it has been at its current location it has actually been moved several times; not very far admittedly but the series of screen shots from Google Earth clearly shows the Futuro in three slightly different locations. The imgery in the screenshots dates from 022608, 061509, 022511 and 022713 respectively (top to bottom, left to right):

Futuro, McLeans Island Road, Christchurch, New Zealand - 022608

Futuro, McLeans Island Road, Christchurch, New Zealand - 061509

Futuro, McLeans Island Road, Christchurch, New Zealand - 022511

Futuro, McLeans Island Road, Christchurch, New Zealand - 022713

Sources
In Books & Magazines
Latest Confirmation

Google Earth satellite imagery dated 022719.

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