Named after Air New Zealand’s predecessor, Tasman Empire Airways Ltd, Teal Park was established to commemorate Air New Zealand’s 30th Anniversary.
The park was developed as joint venture between the Harbour Board and Air New Zealand, with the Harbour Board providing the land and rock for the sculpture, and Air New Zealand commissioning Guy Ngan to design the park’s layout.
Referred to by Ngan as a “stone sculpture garden”, the assembly of the blocks was overseen by Harbour Board design engineer Mr Colin Pask who worked from a model provided by Ngan. The basalt rock sculpture is made from stone that was once part of the old Graving Dock that stood at the bottom of Albert and Hobson Sts.
Teal Park was officially opened in May 1971. The sculpture's original height (4.57m tall) was deemed a health and safety issue, so the work was reduced to its current size.
A plaque, which has been attached to the sculpture since the park opened, states:
"The name of this park and the basalt blocks used in the central feature are both linked with the history of Auckland
On 1st April 1940 Tasman Empire Airways Limited now Air New Zealand pioneered the first commercial Trans Tasman Air Service from Mechanics Bay some 300 yards West of this site
The Basalt Blocks were originally built into the Auckland Dock in 1878 between what are now Hobson and Albert Streets later these blocks became part of the Eastern tide wall
When the seabed in this locality was reclaimed for the container terminal in 1968 the blocks were recovered and now stand as a tangible link with the history of the Port of Auckland
This park is provided by the Auckland Harbour Board the design of the feature was sponsored by Air New Zealand to commemorate their 30th Anniversary"