Following three and half years of development, Sydney’s new state-of-the-art library in Lendlease’s Darling Square precinct was officially opened today by Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore.
Hundreds of Sydneysiders and visitors joined the Lord Mayor to celebrate the opening of the latest stage of Darling Square, part of the $3.4 billion redevelopment of Darling Harbour.
Located over two floors of The Exchange building, designed by Japanese architecture firm Kengo Kuma & Associates, the $10 million Darling Square Library will serve the needs of the rapidly growing number of people moving into and working in this vibrant new neighbourhood.
“At the City of Sydney, we know how much the community value our well-designed libraries,” Lord Mayor Clover Moore said.
“I’m proud of the City’s collaboration with Lendlease, and very excited to open such a beautiful and creative new library inside this spectacular building.
“We’ve created a modern, light-filled library with fantastic facilities, located over two floors of a building that is already a Sydney icon.
“Libraries are no longer just places for people to sit and read. While there are still books and spaces to read and study, there are also meeting rooms for hire, an Ideas Lab to support technology and creative startups, access to a variety of specialist equipment and materials, and a program of workshops for all ages.
“I’m certain that Darling Square Library will quickly become the community’s living room, open for everyone to enjoy.”
Darling Square library has replaced the former Haymarket library which recently closed, with its resources moved to the new facility which is four times bigger. Its services will help to meet the needs of the approximate 4,200 residents and 3,000 office workers in the new neighbourhood.
Highlights of the Darling Square library include:
- a collection of more than 30,000 items, including an Asian literature collection
- bookable meetings rooms with digital technology
- individual workspaces and public computers with free wifi
- a dedicated children’s area and regular bilingual rhymetime and storytime sessions
- a 200sqm Ideas Lab, with a makerspace and unique program of hands-on workshops and events for creation and learning.
The City and Lendlease will work together to oversee the program of events and structure of the Ideas Lab. The space focuses on supporting start-ups and entrepreneurs.
In the last five years, the City has invested more than $114 million in new library collections, technology, infrastructure and operations, including the opening of Darling Square library and Green Square Library and Plaza in October 2018.
“Our City’s libraries give the community access to expert staff, easy-to-access information and up-to-date technologies,” the Lord Mayor said.
“More than ever, libraries are being recognised as cultural destinations alongside museums and galleries, and in a time of rapid population growth, they provide much needed space for people to connect, learn and relax.”
Every year, more than 1.2 million people visit the City’s nine library branches and two library link services, and borrow more than 1.3 million items.
Library members have access to more than 400,000 books, CDs and DVDs, can attend a range of courses including computer training, design skills, programming or our award winning Late Night Library programs.