A cultural centre is being built at Paraparaumu College.
The idea of a cultural centre had been in the pipeline for at least 10 years before gaining traction recently.
Construction of the $1.7 million centre got under way in term two after getting the financial nod from the Ministry of Education.
Architecture firm Re-Design created the design, with Crowe Construction undertaking the build.
It was hoped the cultural centre would be ready for use from February 2022.
The key feature of the centre is the main cultural room measuring 145sq m.
College principal Craig Steed said the cultural centre would be "the home for Te Reo Māori language learning and Māori performing arts".
"It will provide a great base for rangatahi [young people], but also will be a space that will be used by other areas of the school like the performing arts and things like that because it will have the ability to be a multi-use space as well.
"It's going to be fantastic.
"Obviously, we have close connections with Whakarongotai Marae so we're not trying to create a marae.
"I know Kāpiti College has got a marae, but this will be an awesome space for Māori learners."
Supporting the main room will be a classroom, breakout space, staff/resource room, kitchen, toilets, lobby, and store.
A key feature that will be a highlight of the centre, which is positioned at the front of the college, will be a large vertical cultural pou designed by Tracey Morgan who has collaborated with students for the design.
Discussions would be made with local iwi to name the cultural centre.
The cultural centre is being built where the college's year 13 common room used to be.
"The year 13 students are currently using the pavilion, but we will look at where we will locate them permanently soon as we do some redesign.
"We have some other projects under way as well including working with the ministry on our new 10-classroom build.
"We're looking at developing a technology hub."
Meanwhile life is back to normal at the college after the recent Covid alert level 4 and 3 lockdown.
Steed said the experience of lockdown last year had prepared the college well.
"We quickly went into remote learning.
"We largely run through Google Classroom here, even at school, so it was just translating some of the ways we work in a classroom environment to a distance environment.
"There were regular [Zoom] meetings with teachers, as well as flexibility for students to plan some of their week.
"Coming back was about adjusting back to face to face, and students getting ready for upcoming exams."