Library Name: Helensvale Branch Library
Parent Organisation: City of Gold Coast
Street Address: Cnr Lindfield Road and Sir John Overall Drive, Helensvale, Gold Coast, QLD 4212 AUSTRALIA
Postal Address: PO Box 5042, GCMC, QLD 9729, AUSTRALIA
Telephone: + 61 7 55811625
Type of Library: Medium size town library ,Multipurpose building
Project Type: New Building
Size (square metres): Building 4895m2 Library space: 2437m2
Date of Completion: July 2013
Architect: Lahznimmo architects
Opening in July 2013, Helensvale Branch Library and Cultural centre is a city first for the City of Gold Coast. Incorporating a large multi-level branch library, 208 seat auditorium, Media Lab, Recording Studio, Dance/ rehearsal rooms, community meeting spaces and Divisional Councillor’s office, this building provides the community access to a range of City services in one location.
In addition to a large library with a collection of over 110,000 items, the building encourages increased community engagement through access to a range of other service and facilities. The building has a large open public piazza and internal foyer space called the Neighbourhood Room and this space, while connecting the range of services available, is also used to host a variety of activities for the community and private organisations.
Helensvale Branch Library houses the Gold Coast Media Lab. The Media Lab is a digital design and innovation space and is available to residents to work individually or collaboratively on digital projects. The Lab also offers 3D printing to the public using a Projet 260c conceptual model making printer. The 3D printer is a manufacturing quality printer and offers the community access to advance 3D technology and is the first publicly available 3D printer of its kind in Australasia. The Media Lab offers a range of advance computer training programs to the public including 3D design, graphic design, audio visual creation, web design, coding and app creation.
Through spaces like the Media Lab, Recording Studio and Auditorium, City Libraries has had the opportunity to develop and promote creative and cultural opportunities through partnerships with local agencies and groups. City Libraries has supported the first “artist in Residence” youth theatre and the development of a theatre development program through use of the auditorium and library spaces for rehearsal and performance space. The Media Lab has supported a local design artist to produce an augmented reality sculpture and is supporting local business through access to digital resources. In turn these partnerships have allowed the Library to deliver advanced library programming to customers including 3D design and web creation workshops.
The branch library has a large youth demographic within its community and as part of its focus has worked on improving engagement with people aged 0 to 20. With a purpose built children’s area (including its own slide), the library encourages children to engage with the library in a fun and new way. The library’s regular children’s literacy programmes frequently have over 60 children attend each weekly session.
In addition to the regular children’s programming, the library engages with the teen demographic through encouraging the library as a study and social meeting place. The library successfully delivers teen programming throughout the year including weekly drop-in events, yoga sessions and after-hours teen only sessions in the library. In May 2014, Helensvale hosted the inaugural Gold Coast Teen Tech Week event. Over 90 teenagers engaged with the Tech Week events including coding, app creation, music editing, 3D design and printing and an online gaming challenge.
Monthly, on average, Helensvale Branch Library provides library service to 25,500 people, loaning 55,000 items to customers and delivers 50 events to an audience of 900 people.
Awards, case studies, further information
• March 2014: Lahznimmo architects and Complete Urban receive Public Architecture Commendation for Helensvale Branch Library and Community Cultural Youth Centre at the AIA 2014 Queensland Regional Architecture Awards Gold Coast & Northern Rivers.
• Architecture and Design: Learned architecture: Australia’s best new libraries for 2014,
• ArchDaily article on building
• Article written by architect