Council settles on building option for Te Ara Whetū

27 Jun 2024, 3:19 PM

Development of the new library in Waikanae, Te Ara Whetū, reached an important milestone this week when Kāpiti Coast District Council confirmed which building option will progress to concept design.

After investigating several options of building layout, the preferred building arrangement will see a new floor (room/s and terrace) built on top of the former library building.

Kāpiti Coast District Mayor Janet Holborow says the comprehensive building and geotechnical investigations  carried out over the last few months confirmed the structure of the existing building is in good condition and can, with minor strengthening changes, support a third level. 

The entrance to the Waikanae Library building with it's colourful mural.

The entrance to the Waikanae Library. See larger image

“The new floor plan involves slightly increasing the building’s footprint by removing the angled glass roof and squaring  up the building. The plan adds a room and some terrace area on the roof but won’t extend out the back as we had initially considered,” said Mayor Holborow.

“The new third floor will provide more space and allow people to enjoy the mountains-to-sea view, which is an integral part of the building’s narrative.

“Importantly, the design has been thoroughly costed by a quantity surveyor to provide us with confidence that it can be achieved within the existing LTP budget allocation of $15.5 million. It’s also the least disruptive and quickest option to build.

“Reroofing the building to accommodate the third floor will fix any leaks and remove the internal gutters which contributed to its weather tightness issues. Another benefit of maintaining the building’s footprint is that it allows us to use the existing courier drop-off area at the the back of the building,” added Mayor Holborow.

With this decision confirmed, architects Studio Pacific will begin developing concept designs. They’ll take into account feedback from last year’s community engagement to deliver a library with flexible, accessible and welcoming spaces where communities can connect.

“We look forward to sharing a concept design with the community in a few months,” said Mayor Holborow.

Read more about Te Ara Whetū, the new Waikanae library