The Ooze

Will Martel

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Modos image 1
Model of the proposed Pāuatahanui Village

The Ooze is a story that tells the tale of Pāuatahanui, a small village on the outskirts of Wellington, and its fight over the adjacent suburban sprawl. This thesis, told from the perspective of Pāuatahanui, is set across three books. Each book deals with a different issue, a different time, and a different set of characters. The Ooze is set within a realm of fiction and uses a combination of storytelling and comedic relief to make the ideas discussed more palatable for a wide audience.

There was once a small but bustling village called Pāuatahanui. Pāuatahanui was an old village and it loved everyone and everything. It loved the quiet but happy people who had lived within it for many years. It loved the rolling hills, the joyful bush, and the wonderful wetland. Pāuatahanui lived this way for many years, in quiet solitude from the busy cities of Wellington and Porirua. Until Whitby came. Over time, like scars on the landscape, banal cookie-cutter houses rolled endlessly towards Pāuatahanui. Unlike the happy homes that Pāuatahanui had seen before, these were cruel, placed so close to one another that they looked like one never-ending sea of grey roofs and beige weatherboards. Whitby commanded four acolytes, The Developer, The City Councillor, The Residents Association Representative, and The Farmer. Assured that they were providing valuable homes for those in need, they never questioned what they were doing. Poor Pāuatahanui was afraid—afraid for its people, afraid for the animals, and afraid for its beloved landscapes. Landscapes that had stood still for a hundred years or more. What was to happen now, asked Pāuatahanui, and would anyone stand up to this sea of un-ending cruelty? Whitby had enslaved the poor residents of Pāuatahanui. People lived in black and white, the natural landscape was paved over, and any love for the wetlands was now forgotten and polluted. It was a sorrowful place. Then the unexpected happened. An Artist, A Gamer, A Stay at Home Mum, and A Grandma rebelled against the tyrannical rule of Whitby. They coalesced and overran the Pāuatahanui Cinema, gifting the building back to the disenfranchised. Nurseries were reinstated, galleries formed, and playgrounds built. The cinema grew and became the physical embodiment of Pāuatahanui. It reached out with a tenderness that had been forgotten, gifting purpose to the residents, landscape, and animals. The land was replanted as the wetland was reborn. Houses were downsized and reconfigured to let more sunlight in, providing a space of wellbeing and comfort for the residents. Communal living rooms were scattered throughout the neighbourhood and towers were constructed to maintain density, housing those who wished to live differently and enjoy the panoramic views over the now thriving Pāuatahanui landscape. And so goes the story of Pāuatahanui. A story of hardship and sorrow, but ultimately of rebirth and victory over the mundanity and sameness of urban sprawl.

The Pāuatahanui Village
Book One Site Map
Book Two Site Map
Book Three Site Map
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The Towers
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The Houses