Ngā mihi o te Kirihimete from your library

Laurinda Thomas, Libraries and Community Spaces Manager

2019 has been an unprecedented year for Wellington City Libraries, a real year of highs and lows.

The closure of the Central Library in March 2019 affected both our customers and staff deeply, and underscored how valued the Central Library was to us all.

The closure set in motion a huge chain of events, which is still in progress. This included opening two new CBD Libraries, Arapaki and He Matapihi, with a third CBD library  on its way in 2020. Although Arapaki is only 250sqm, it’s had over 225,000 visitors since it opened in May. We’ve also started the fit out of Te Pātaka in Johnsonville, where we’ll be relocating all our Central Library collections and making them available to request. We’re excited to get these up and running.

We’re delighted about the opening of Waitohi, the new Community Hub in Johnsonville, which includes the new Johnsonville Library. Waitohi opened on Saturday 14th December, and is a beautiful facility which connects the Johnsonville Library, Keith Spry Pool, Waitohi Kindergarten, Johnsonville Community Centre and Common Ground Café. Sam who is the owner of Common Ground café also used to run Clarks in the Central Library, and it’s lovely to be able to welcome him back into our facilities.

Throughout the year, we’ve run all kinds of programmes and events, such as He Timotimo, Eavesdropping Underwater, Chinese Language Week, Ozobots vs Minotaurs, and Beyond the Page, to name just a few.  We’ve had a wonderful response to our events in 2019 and we’re looking forward to bringing you lots of new events in 2020.

I would like to end my message with a huge thank you to all our customers. Your support during what has been a difficult and busy time for all the Library staff and your positive response to the new libraries we’ve been opening in the CBD and in the hub at Waitohi has been so heartening for all of us. Our sincere thanks to you all.

Kia pai ngā hararei (have a happy holiday)!

Laurinda

Naming of our newest CBD library caps off busy year for library services

Wellington’s third CBD library has been gifted the name Te Awe (meaning white feathers or plumes) which caps off an eventful but productive year for the city’s library service, says Mayor Andy Foster.

The Mayor says 2019 was extremely busy for staff with the closure of the Central Library building, the opening of two new central city libraries and the Johnsonville Library at Waitohi, and the design and planning of Te Awe Library in Brandon Street. The new collection and distribution centre, which has been named Te Pātaka – a storehouse, is also under construction in Johnsonville and will house the Central Library’s collection of over 400,000 items.

“I’m proud of the many major milestones we have achieved in only nine months since the Central Library closure in March. As well as opening three new libraries, staff have delivered the popular ComicFest and Beyond the Page events, held the Kanopy Film Festival and expanded the digital collections that members can access.

“A new artwork and hoarding has been installed around the Central Library as we begin to look at options for the future of central city library services. This is part of Council’s Te Ngākau programme where staff are considering the future development of the Civic Precinct as a whole, including the Central Library building.” Council staff will be reporting to the Mayor and Councillors on this in March 2020.

“We know that libraries play a key role in the social infrastructure of our communities. They’re crucial to our city both in terms of providing access to a range of collections and programmes which inform, entertain and educate, but also in providing our communities a place to meet, talk and grow.”

Community facilities portfolio leader Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons says Te Awe Library is planned to open by May, which will give contractors time to fit out the space.

“We’re working closely with our architects to ensure the design makes best use of the space available and is fit for purpose as the largest new CBD library. The building has undergone significant structural strengthening and the new library space is currently a blank canvas so the fit out will take some months to complete.”

Councillor Fitzsimons says work on Te Pātaka is also well underway and staff expect to begin relocating items in the Central Library collection as soon as February 2020. Items may become available to library members to request as early as April 2020 by which time most items will have been relocated.

More information:
Central city library services FAQs
Timeline for Wellington Central Library Replacement Services

Johnsonville Library is opening at Waitohi Hub!

This Saturday, come and join us at the official opening of Johnsonville Library at Waitohi, the new Johnsonville community hub. There will be a morning of celebrations including the ribbon cutting-ceremony and cultural performances. 

7am-8am Public opening ceremony

  • Master of ceremonies : Jennifer Parker (Wellington City Council)
  • Welcome – Kura Moeahu and Taku Parai (Iwi leaders)
  • Introduction – Laurinda Thomas, Libraries Manager (Wellington City Council)
  • Speech from Hon Tracey Martin – Minister of Internal Affairs
  • Speech from His Worship the Mayor of Wellington
  • Ribbon cutting ceremony
  • Unveiling of commemorative plaque
  • Performance by Wellington Chinese Language School children’s group
  • Wellington Interfaith Council presentation “We Are One”
  • Bharatanatyam performance by Natraj school of Indian dance
  • Lion dance by Wellington China Cultural Centre

The new café, Common Ground Waitohi. will open at 8am and we will have exclusive tours of the building starting at the same time. The new library will open for everyone to visit at 9am. We hope to see you there!

New artwork surrounding Central Library celebrates life of Jacquie Baxter

And only sea is the title of a new artwork on the hoarding surrounding Wellington Central Library, designed by Mata Aho Collective in collaboration with Andre Te Hira. The artwork celebrates the civic and literary life of poet J.C. Sturm, also known as Jacquie Baxter. Baxter worked as a librarian at the Central Library for over twenty years. She was one of the first Māori women to complete an undergraduate degree, the first Māori woman to attain an MA in Philosophy, and also one of the first Māori women to appear in print.

New artwork being installed at Central Library

The artists chose to render one of her poems On the building site for a new library (published 1996), as the work references the construction of the Central Library and also Wellington city’s land reclamation where Civic Square was once underwater. The artwork acknowledges the civic location and literary connection, tells a story about the history of the land and people – connects to the area’s Māori heritage and geography, and celebrates the importance of libraries to our cities as places of learning, refuge and relaxation.

The new artwork provides vibrancy to the area as the long term future of the building and Te Ngākau — Civic Precinct is worked through. There will be a blessing for the new artwork on Sunday 15 December.

To find out more about Jacquie’s life, library staff have compiled a biography, shown below.

Festive storytimes are here!

Ho! Ho! Ho! Deck the halls with books of jolly…! These festive storytimes are a family favourite every year, and we are excited to announce the 2019 line up.

Suitable for families with children of all ages, come along in your favourite Christmas costume or pajamas, and listen to stories and songs about the Christmas Season. No need to book, just turn up!

Thursday 12th December

Karori Library, 6 – 7pm
Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library, 6.30 – 7.30pm

Friday 13th December

He Matapihi (Molesworth St) Library, 10 – 10.45am, Bilingual Storytime

Saturday 14th December

Arapaki (Manners St) Library, 10.30 – 11.15am

Monday 16th December

Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library, 6 – 7pm
Miramar Library, 6 – 6.45pm
Brooklyn Library, 6.30 – 7.15pm

Thursday 19th December

Island Bay Community Centre, 4.30 – 5.30pm, Christmas Crafts
Island Bay Library, 6 – 6.45pm
Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library, 6 – 6.45pm
Khandallah Library, 6 – 7pm
Wadestown Library, 6.30 – 7.15pm

Friday 20th December

Newtown Library, 6 – 6.45pm Multicultural Storytime

Saturday 21st December

Johnsonville Library at Waitohi Hub, 2 – 3pm

festive-storytimes

 

Holiday hours for 2019/2020

A warm season’s greetings to all our library borrowers and visitors with best wishes for a happy holiday season. Here are the opening hours across all our libraries from Tuesday 24 December 2019 to Friday 3 January 2020.

All our libraries will be closed 25 December, 26 December, New Year’s Day and 2 January. Between Tuesday 24 December and Friday 3 January,  library branches will be open with reduced hours. See our holiday timetable for details.

Our libraries resume regular opening hours on Monday 6 January.

Of course our eLibrary will be available throughout the holiday period! This includes eBooks, eMagazines and streaming movies to keep you entertained, along with newspapers & eMagazines in PressReader. Happy holidays everyone!

Johnsonville Library is moving to Waitohi this Saturday!

We’re excited to announce that Johnsonville Library is moving to its new home at the Waitohi Community Hub very soon. To give us time to transfer the books, Johnsonville Library doors will close at 4pm on Saturday 30 November.

The library will reopen at the new Waitohi Community Hub at 9am on Saturday 14 December.

In the meantime you can use your Wellington library card at our other Wellington City libraries. You can however still return your books through the after hours slot at the old Johnsonville library. This will be open 24/7.

We can’t wait to see you in our new home – come and join us on the 14th for a fun-filled day of opening celebration!

He Matapihi Molesworth Library now open

Wellingtonians have today gained a second central city library service, this time with a focus on Aotearoa, with the opening of a new cooperative space in the National Library.

He Matapihi Molesworth Library was opened today with a small Whakatau before the library officially opened to the public.

Wellington Mayor Justin Lester says, “It’s a pleasure to add this welcoming new space to our CBD library network. Wellingtonians now have access to over 5000 items in our Aotearoa and Māori collection in one special location. We’re very thankful for the support we’ve received from everyone as we’ve been developing our replacement library services following the closure of the Central Library.”

He says the Council’s first replacement library service, Arapaki Manners Library which opened in May, continues to receive positive feedback from visitors. “I hope He Matapihi Molesworth will be just as well-received, and we are also looking forward to the opening of our third CBD library in the Harbour City Centre early next year, and to getting our new collection and distribution centre up and running in Johnsonville.”

National Librarian Bill Macnaught says the library opening marks the first milestone in a successful ongoing partnership between the National Library and the Council which allows people to access the knowledge held in both collections. “The new library is next to our popular He Tohu exhibition and provides a shared space that school groups and other visitors will be able to use.”

Community facilities portfolio leader Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons says staff have carefully hand-picked the new library’s Aotearoa collection to make sure a mix of items are available which reflect the depth of material on New Zealand society and culture. “We’re also happy to include a dedicated children’s section.”

Items can be borrowed or browsed and include topics such as Māori and Māori local history, NZ fiction, biography, books in te reo, art and architecture, natural history, general history and social comment. The library also offers magazines, access to digital content, free WiFi, public PCs, printing and seating. Library staff are on hand to answer questions and join up new members. Hours are 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday, and 9am to 1pm Saturday. Further library information can be found via the Visit He Matapihi Molesworth Library branchpage.

Haven’t sent off your voting papers? Vote at your local library

Voters who have not yet sent off their voting papers by mail have until 12 noon on Saturday October 12 to drop them in the ballot boxes at any Wellington City library, including Arapaki Manners Library and Service Centre, He Matapihi Molesworth Library, plus the Strathmore Park Community Centre, Newlands Community Centre, Linden Social Centre, and the Wellington City Council offices level 16 reception area at 113 The Terrace.

This election, for the first time, Wellington City Council is also hosting a ‘special vote hub’ to provide more voting options for the tens of thousands of voters who commute into the capital each day.  The special voting hub is for voters in the Wellington, Porirua, Hutt, Upper Hutt, Kāpiti Coast, South Wairarapa, Carterton, and Masterton city and district council elections.

“Any voter who lives in the greater Wellington region can apply for a special vote at the Arapaki Manners Library and Service Centre, no matter where they live,” says Wellington City Electoral Officer, Warwick Lampp. “This means that if you travel into Wellington City, you can pick up special voting forms here rather than at the Council office near your home address.”

Special votes are available for anyone who has enrolled late, lost their original voting document, or to avoid inconvenience or hardship. You can apply for a special vote from 20 September to midday 12 October by going to the Arapaki Manners Library and Service Centre in Manners Street.

There is also a voting box at the Wellington Railway Station for the final week of voting – from 6.30am to 9.30am, and from 4pm to 6.30pm.