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Central City Library Officially Opens New Doors

Auckland City Council

New entrance doors at the Central City Library will be opened on Thursday (26 August) by the Mayor, Chris Fletcher. The official opening marks a major milestone in the $17 million project to expand and completely refurbish the Central City Library by March 2000.

City Librarian Barbara Birkbeck says the ceremony on Thursday morning will mark the half-way point of the ground floor refurbishment, on time and to budget. "Thanks to City Property, a well managed and phased approach to the refurbishment has meant that, with a few minor exceptions, all services have continued to be delivered to customers as the major building works have taken place – including the necessary upgrading of heating, ventilation and fire systems."

The Central City Library Project began in 1997, to complete development of the building which originally opened in 1982. Barbara Birkbeck says large areas of the building were left uncompleted and, as pressure on public space intensified, the decision was made to finish it to maximise the potential of this major investment.

The First Phase of the Project was to update the infrastructure and open a new floor to the public, the Heritage Floor. The Heritage Floor has world-class environmental conditions for storage of rare materials, and its opening set precedents in terms of New Zealand libraries – access gates (to regional resources), and a bicultural space dedicated to learning and listening for both Maori and Pakeha.

Refurbishment of the first floor was completed in March this year and refurbishment of all the public areas will be completed in November. The final Phase of the Project is completion of the Refurbishment of the third floor meeting areas and conference suite.

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