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Manukau Library Wins Architecture Award

Manukau City Council’s Tupu-Dawson Road Youth Library has received a 2001 New ZeaIand Institute of Architects Local Award.

The award was presented to architects, Creative Spaces Ltd, at a function held at the New Lynn Community Centre on Friday 30 November.

Creative Spaces Ltd is an Auckland company specialising in architecture and interior design, and strategic facilities management. Architect Andrew Tu'inukuafe says that Tupu is not a traditional branch library.

“Our design challenge was to reflect that fact that this is a youth-focused facility with a high IT content and a study/homework ethos. One of the main objectives for this library is to attract young people who would not use a traditional branch library,” he says.

The judges’ citation stated “This vibrant little library is a modest yet intricate building that is conspicuously user-friendly. Located in Otara for use by a multicultural clientele this building firmly de-mystifies libraries as silent tomes, encouraging active participation. The patterns
formed by the textures of ceilings, walls and floor add visual liveliness and aural comfort. When the jury visited it was full of children on a fine Saturday afternoon – sure testimony to its success.”

Extensive consultation was undertaken with the local community, including school principals and chairpersons of board of trustees, school students, church ministers and community representatives. Input received from these discussions led to the final design.

The brief to the architects was to design a facility that reflected the local community in terms of its architectural style and its fitout.

The building is a modern Pacific design, situated on the Ferguson Oaks Reserve to take advantage of the views of the Reserve’s magnificent oak trees. Study spaces for groups and individuals are a feature of the library.

Council’s Libraries Manager, Mr Chris Szekely, says “We wanted both the design of the library and the programmes delivered there, to be modern, exciting and attractive to young people. We want those who do not currently use a library to see this as a ‘cool’ place to be. We are extremely pleased with the response to Tupu from the youth and the local community, and we’ve attracted a lot of interest within the education and library communities with this concept.”

The 2001 NZIA - Resene Local Architecture Awards acknowledge high quality new architecture being done in each of the Institute’s eight branch areas each year.

The Awards have two purposes. They honour local projects, particularly those being done by new or smaller practitioners. These may include low cost works and renovations, as well as bigger projects. These Awards also tell the public each year about the best architecture being offered in their local community, thus interesting them in local architects and what they can offer.

ENDS

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