Manawatū Community Hub/Library Redevelopment
Wow! We’re finally underway with the redevelopment of the Manawatū Community Hub (Feilding Library)! It’s taken us a while to get to this point. Plans to modernise the library were initiated in 2017. But a couple of false starts and a global pandemic got in the way before we could progress.
But we’re underway now and that’s pretty exciting for us, and hopefully you too!
Now, you’ll notice that we’re going to slowly move away from describing this building as the Feilding Library, and instead be referring to it as a community hub (an official name is yet to be determined).
You might be asking, “why?”
It's because even prior to now, we’re more than just a library that stores books. We provide experiences, events, school holiday programmes, education and services for the benefit of our community.
This redevelopment will provide us a modern, safe, non-judgemental, and flexible community space that our residents can be proud of!
The building will have event and meeting spaces and programmes for lifelong learning opportunities (te taha hinengaro), social interaction and wellbeing (te taha whanau), physical wellbeing (te taha tinana), literacy (including digital literacy) opportunities and a safe place for the community to do their own thing.
To achieve this we are:
- Expanding the footprint of the existing building to create proper and adaptable meeting and community spaces (including a Makerspace).
- Upgrade the existing building (including all fittings, fixtures and equipment) to future proof the service.
- Introduce a leased café space into the community hub.
- Seismic work on the existing building.
The approved budget for the redevelopment is $12.5 million. Woah! That’s quite a lot, we hear you say. There’s no denying that.
But, we’ve been successful in receiving funding from the following organisations:
New Zealand Community Trust = $150,000
Eastern and Central Community Trust = $200,000
New Zealand Lotteries = $400,000
Central Energy Trust = $400,000
TOTAL (So far) = $1.15 million
We’ve also applied for $3.76 million from the government’s Three Waters Better Off Funding.
As you can see, construction is underway and we’re aiming for completion in mid 2024. We’ll be providing residents with regular updates on how things are progressing via our website, social media, Council’s radio show on MPR. Also, at various points during the construction, we’ll be inviting people to tour the site and see progress for themselves.