Between 10 pm Saturday, 11 July and 1 am Sunday, 12 July (AEST) access to the Manuscripts, Oral History and Pictures catalogue and the viewing of digitised items will be temporarily unavailable. We apologise for any inconvenience.


The Library's reading rooms are open. Before you visit, please read Visiting the Library. 

People Places

A guide for public library buildings in NSW

People places: A guide for public library buildings in NSW Sydney: Library Council of New South Wales,  Third edition 2012, is an important planning tool for New South Wales public libraries. This publication, endorsed by the Library Council of New South Wales, contains practical advice and tools to assist in the planning of public library buildings to meet the needs of your community.

We are currently working on a new web version of People Places.

Tools and templates to help you plan your library building

The updated tools are now available. Further information on planning, trends and service areas will be published on this website throughout 2019.

Library building calculator

The Library building  calculator is a tool to help you determine the appropriate library size for your community. Calculations are based on population and services to be offered.

The State Library recommends that you use the population and service based calculators together when you are planning a new library building. The renovation calculator allows you to start with an existing area and allocate spaces as required.

Other tools

Library design examples

As part of the development of People Places 3rd Edition, FJMT architects compiled examples of library designs:

American Libraries
Australian Libraries
European Libraries
NSW Libraries
Scandinavian Libraries
Building Element Exemplars