Revealed: Stunning designs in Auckland high-rise competition

Five stunning designs for a landmark high-rise tower in central Auckland have been revealed on Thursday, as the world's top architects go head to head.

The tower will be located on Federal St in the heart of Auckland city, and brought to life by ICD Property.

Images of the proposed towers have been released by the architecture firms, comprised of Woods Bagot, Cox Architect, Zaha Hadid, Elenberg Fraser and locals Warren and Mahoney.

Each has provided two options, with the first design following current city planning rules and the second showcasing what can be built with more liberal planning parameters.

The designs include a tower with a Sky Garden representing the Auckland landscape, through to a local design inspired by a Māori korowai (cloak).

The winning design will be announced in October by ICD Property - but what do you think? Have a look at the designs below and vote in the Newshub poll.

Warren and Mahoney

Revealed: Stunning designs in Auckland high-rise competition

Warren and Mahoney's entry is inspired by a korowai, which can be seen in the building's cascading façade. Warren and Mahoney principal architect Andrew Barclay says the Federal St project is an opportunity to reflect Auckland's unique population, cultural diversity and geography.

"At present Auckland does not have a mixed-use hotel and residential building that has these qualities," he says.

"The project is located in one of Auckland's most exciting locations, so it has a responsibility to contribute to Auckland's increasingly vibrant inner-city life, both during the day and by night."

Zaha Hadid Architects

Revealed: Stunning designs in Auckland high-rise competition

Zaha Hadid Architects design was inspired by bringing the city's streetscape into the very heart of the tower with a Sky Garden.

"Auckland's ambition and vision for the future must cater for everyone in the city, and in that respect mixed-use projects and plenty of publicly accessible spaces will be the most successful," says associate director Michele Pasca di Magliano.

Woods Bagot

Revealed: Stunning designs in Auckland high-rise competition

Pete Miglis, principal architect at Woods Bagot, says the project will transform Federal St and its surrounds, especially at street level with a focus on giving the streets back to the people.

"It will also enhance the city's skyline and importantly it's all about a building that will reinforce Auckland as a global city."

Cox Architecture

Revealed: Stunning designs in Auckland high-rise competition

Phil Rowe of Cox Architecture says the challenge posed by ICD's Auckland project was to address how architects and designers can improve and inspire the future of Auckland.

"It has to be done in a very Auckland way, rather than importing what is perceived by fashion to be 'best practice'. The building will be a visual icon for what Auckland can and will look like in the future."

Elenberg Fraser

Revealed: Stunning designs in Auckland high-rise competition

For Callum Fraser of Elenberg Fraser, the most exciting aspect of the Federal St project is delivering to Auckland an environment worthy of the city's position as a leading global tourism destination.

"This is a real opportunity to see what the future looks like. The world looks to New Zealand for its freedom, ingenuity and independence of thought," he said.

"The spotlight on Auckland is to see what that means for the physical construction of the city, which is only a by-product of that culture."