The concrete floor for Whangārei's camera obscura has been poured, marking a "milestone" in what has been "five years of really determined hard work".
Photographer and project leader Diane Stoppard and architect Felicity Christian first had the idea of the Camera Obscura in 2011.
Stoppard said the concrete being poured on Tuesday was a "momentous" day.
"It's really coming to life. It has been five years of really determined hard work on the plans front. There's a lot of voluntary hours gone in to this so it's really heartwarming to see it's starting to grow."
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A camera obscura is the optical device that led to photography. It is a room or box with a hole in one side - light from outside passes through the hole and strikes the walls inside, where the external scene is reproduced upside down.
The Whangārei obscura - which doubles as a sculpture - will be built along the Hatea Loop and will reflect Te Matau ā Pohe.
The total cost of the project is $991,000, with the final stage - construction - costing $892,292.
Donations towards the construction phase totalled $433,350, with the remaining $459,000 being contributed by the Provincial Growth Fund.
"I think it's going to be an amazing asset for our city," Stoppard said
"It's the most basic thing but it's the most wondrous thing and the loop is such an amazing asset for our families and whānau in Whangārei."
Stoppard and Christian brought sculptor Trish Clarke on board in 2015 and the trio launched a crowdfunding campaign in 2016.
"The combination of photographer and architect and sculptor has just been fantastic. We've worked so well," she said.
Stoppard said they are aiming for a July opening.