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Concept design for new library unveiled

Published: 12 October 2023

Last Updated: 17 October 2023

Hastings St view southwest

Concept designs for Napier’s new library and governance facilities were today approved by Council. This means the design can now be further progressed from the initial concept.

The new facility is set to be constructed on the corner of Hastings and Station Streets and replaces the now demolished Civic building.

Napier Mayor Kirsten Wise says getting to this point marks a major milestone for the project.

“We’ve now reached an exciting phase, where we can get an idea of how the area could look in the future.”

“I know this will eventually become a very special place for Napier residents. We’re envisaging a community gathering space that all Napier residents can have ownership of and call our own,” says Mayor Wise.

The project that is delivering the new library and governance facilities is known as Te Aka.

Deputy Mayor Annette Brosnan says Te Aka is a unique project in that it involved a community partnership right from the beginning.

“Engagement with the community on the vision before the old building had been demolished was key. We then began developing the Library and Civic Area Plan, working closely with mana whenua, friends of the library, neighbours, and community groups to ensure the eventual outcome reflects a space everyone will want to be.”

The concept design was developed by Athfield Architects and mana whenua design lead, Israel Birch. The design is underpinned by a cultural narrative that describes what is unique about Napier and the stories important to this city and surroundings. The cultural narrative is woven through the concept design.

“Our design partnership with mana whenua will continue through to the next design stage, including the outdoor public spaces,” says Deputy Mayor Brosnan.

The concept design images and cultural narrative can be viewed on Napier City Council’s website using the keyword search #TeAka.

Next steps for the project will be further development of the design, which will go through various phases of progress throughout 2024. The community will have the chance to see this before Council adopts the proposed design in early 2025. Construction is due to begin in 2025/26.

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