News, Events and Culture

Library of the future project seeking contractor interest

Monday March 20 2017

Registrations of interest are being invited from contractors for the refurbishment of Palmerston North’s Central Library.

Photo shows artist's impression of new cafe with a giant video screen, tiered seating and French doors open to the street.

A key feature of the refurbishment will be the creation of a café and events space on the ground floor.

This will be the first of a two-stage procurement process over the coming months.

A contractor will be selected in July 2017 after a vigorous tender evaluation, with building work expected to begin in August.

With 2,000 visitors every day, the Central Library is the Council’s most heavily-used facility, with more than 10-million visitors through the doors since the Library first opened in the heritage building twenty years ago.

"With the library remaining operational throughout the most of the construction, access and safety for both public and staff will be a priority, while also ensuring our selected contractor can work effectively," says PNCC General Manager Libraries and Community Services Debbie Duncan.

"Our building is much loved by the community and we are committed to ensuring its heritage is respected throughout the changes we are planning to make," she says.

Key features of the refurbishment include the creation of a café and events space on the ground floor, which will also allow entry access directly from the Square.  Greater linkage at street level will also feature in George Street.

The current events space will be remodelled as a Makerspace to create an area where people can experiment with new technologies, be creative and attend related programmes and events. A 'village green' type space with a community area for groups to showcase their services and access to global news will feature on the mezzanine floor. Other areas under refurbishment include the archives storage area, the Children’s Library, and the provision of a digital technology lab. The project also includes ensuring water tightness, addressing climate control issues, upgrading lighting and data capability, along with new flooring on the ground and mezzanine floors.

Over recent years, there has been significant change to how libraries operate and the services they provide. "The refurbishment will deliver a 'library of the future' that will continue to delight and inspire people to be innovators, creators, learners and active participants in community life," says Debbie Duncan.

The project is due to be completed by March 2018.

Registrations of interest close at 4pm on 7 April 2017. For more information about the registration of interest, contact PNCC Senior Project Engineer Katherine Stannard on 06 356 8199 ext 7639, or email katherine.stannard@pncc.govt.nz

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