The Wellington region's largest sculpture, Lightwing is being installed at a roundabout in Lower Hutt this week.
About 20 tonnes of steel have gone into making the sculpture, which is about 6m high and 10m wide.
While it's not as tall the Zephryometer wind sculpture in Evans Bay, it's larger in a different way, said Allan Brown of the E Tu Awakairangi Hutt Public Art Trust.
Costing at least $250,000 to build and install, the sculpture is designed to represent the area in a way the viewer identifies with.
"It can take on a variety of meanings depending on which one you happen to choose," said Brown.
"It could be a bird's wing, you can kind of see feathers in it, or it could be a replication of the shape of the hills behind it, you've got that sort of undulation and valley approach. Or it could be just a wave breaking on the sea. And all of those things are typical parts of the Lower Hutt valley environment."
Brown said the industrial areas of Seaview and Gracefield, where the sculpture will be placed, were "unrecognised to everybody as to what they contribute to the economy".
"There are a number of ways a city can brand a particular location ... [it was] suggested that through art work that was actually made in that location could be a good way of doing it."
The sculpture is going on the busy Seaview/Gracefield roundabout.
Lightwing is a result of a five-year collaboration project between the Hutt City Council, the Trust, the Seaview Business Association, and local businesses.
"Seaview is a manufacturing distribution centre not well-recognised for its economic value - we wanted a sculpture that was highly visible for people travelling to and from work and something for the local businesses in the area to be proud of," said association chairman Angus Kincaid.
In 2013 the council allocated funding to the Trust. It began work on developing a brief which led to an extensive process to find the right artist.
"The brief was to develop a piece of work that said something about the distinctive local history of Seaview and Gracefield but to have a contemporary take on that - to create a sculpture that would identify and acknowledge the area's past, present and future, taking into account its industrial industry and natural environment," said council's urban design manager Paki Maaka.
"What attracted us to the Lightwing was the fact it could be made locally and embraced both traditional industrial aesthetics and new technology," said Maaka.
The artist behind Lightwing is Andrew Thomas - a Wellington production designer with a background in designing for theatre, film and new museum experience design.
"Lightwing draws itself from many aspects of the environment," Thomas said.
"Each feather form is a stylisation of the finer feathers that make up the wing of the matuku moana (white-faced heron), which can be found at the river mouth and shoreline of this area.
"From the soft repeating curves of the layered hills that recede beyond Wainuiomata to the Wairarapa to the many curves forming the Waiwhetu stream that winds its way through the valley, on to the many shifting curves of the waves reflecting the movements of the tides.
"This repetition of form also creates a kind of canopy, a shelter, a whare. Lightwing has been designed to morph in shape and form as you move around it."
The sculpture installation is not without its challenges. Due to the many storm water and sewer connections underneath the roundabout the team face several technical hurdles and a whole new foundation had to be conceived.
Traffic also poses issues with planning and installation given the location is in the middle of a busy roundabout.
"We also faced a huge expense with the sculpture so approached businesses in the Seaview/Gracefield area to see if they could contribute and we were overwhelmed with the response," said Brown.
MJH Engineering, Seaview Blasting, Dulux and GK Shaw Seaview helped keep costs down by building the steelwork, doing the installation, painting and blasting the sculpture.
"It's really an amazing way in which the business community and council have come together to achieve what I think will be a lasting and highly visible result."
The sculpture will be unveiled on May 15.