Managing the project for each phase of the building.

Plan opportunities into your library.

Planning a new library building is a complex process. It is likely to take many years from the first thought that a new library is needed to the opening of a library building. During this process there are many issues that need to be considered and many steps that need to be taken. 

There will be some similarity in functional areas from one library to the next, but no two libraries are the same. The planning process is the opportunity to design a library that is unique, suits the needs of your community, can provide relevant services and reflect the identity of the local area. 

The People Places website includes this Planning section, but every section has information or tools to help inform the planning and design of your new or refurbished library.

In this section

Community needs

For public libraries, the greatest emphasis remains on the services and collections provided and how it meets the needs of the surrounding community.

Starting your library project: working group

Once a library project is identified as being required and approved to commence, a project framework must be implemented.

New building, refurbishment or mobile?

How the library is built can have a substantial impact on refurbishment and operational costs, and on the future functionality and services to be provided.

Co-location and joint use libraries

Prior to determining the need for and size of a library development project, it is essential to consider whether there is a need for a co-located or joint use library.

Developing a building brief

The library brief outlines the requirements of a library service and the new/extended building.

Understanding the building design and construction phases

If the team is new to the building design process, understanding what level of information should be expected at each stage is critical.

Selecting the architect, project manager and other consultants

There are a number of ways of entering into a selection process such as a design competition, a tender process or choosing outright based on experience and reputation.

Funding and costs

The cost and ability to fund the construction and operation of a new or extended public library is one of the main concerns of local government.

Staffing requirements

Skilled and well-trained staff are key to the successful running of a library service.

Collection plan

The provision of an improved library collection is an important component of a library development project.

Developing a Local Technology Plan

Developing a technology plan is recommended to ensure that local technology needs will be met by the new library.

Workplace health and safety: risk and opportunity in design

The assessment and management of risks and opportunities is a key part of planning, design and building.

Evaluation: post construction and post occupancy

Following the completion of the building, the library is ready for occupation. Those managing the building need to have a clear understanding of how to operate it.