Innovative libraries delivering good design


Congratulations to the five library design award winners 


Melbourne , Monday 19 June, 2017: The Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) has today announced the five winners of its inaugural Library Design Awards 2017 at its conference in Melbourne.

Thirty-three stunning libraries were entered in the awards and there is a winner in each category: public, school, academic and special libraries all feature in the entries.

The Australian Library Design Awards were created to showcase the best in contemporary library interiors and exteriors in Australia, and to celebrate the investment in libraries made by our nation's institutions, corporations, local, state and territory governments.

The winners in the five categories are:

1. Public Library

City of Perth Library, Perth WA | Kerry Hill Architects

To best serve this community, the Library was designed to allow the best possible use of spaces and services. In addition to the physical collections and stock for borrowing, the Library has dedicated floors targeted to different demographics. For example, a floor for very young children with appropriately designed furniture and soft surfaces, as well as a young adult floor with study rooms and recreation areas, a History Centre for quiet study, bookable meeting rooms, hire facilities and many spaces for reading, studying and relaxation.

2. School Library 

Hanly Learning Centre, St Joseph’s Nudgee College, Boondall, Qld | M3architecture

St Joseph's Nudgee College is an all-boys Catholic school with a population of approximately 1500 students from year 5 to year 12. The school library is within the Hanly Learning Centre and is open from early morning into the evening for use by day and boarding students. The Library offers a variety of spaces suited to individual study, small groups and classes in a variety of modes including collaboration, contemplation, didactic teaching and incidental learning. Students benefit from the co-location of complementary learning and support facilities such as the library, the Learning and Teaching department, IT and AV support, classrooms and cafeteria.

3. Academic Library

John Phillips Library, Western Sydney University, Penrith Campus, NSW | Architects AJ+C

The John Phillips Library is one of six Western Sydney University libraries and primarily serves the students and staff of Western Sydney University Penrith campus. The current teaching areas at Penrith include Education, Science Computing and Engineering, and Design and Communication Arts. Additionally the library supports Western Sydney University College, and provides services for walk-in users from the local community including students from other universities. The library provides access to over one million electronic scholarly materials, targeted physical collections, group, quiet and silent study spaces and has integrated accessible furniture as standard practice.

4. Special Library

Arup Library, Sydney, NSW | BVN

Arup Library is a multi-disciplinary engineering and design consultancy, with more than 13,000 staff globally. Arup Library (Australasia), is part of Arup University, an internal university, whose aim is to promote and achieve technical excellence through the development of its staff. The Library team is comprised of six highly skilled librarians, capable of carrying out in-depth research that supports the business with winning work, complete project work and help keeps the region up-to-date with clients, technology, industry and more. There are numerous physical collections within the region and the Sydney Library, including the Arup University space. Photo credit: John Gollings 

5. ALIA Members' Choice

Geelong Library & Heritage Centre, Geelong Regional Library Corporation, Geelong, VIC | ARM Architecture

The Geelong Regional Library Corporation provides library and information services to  residents and visitors across the Geelong region on behalf of the four member councils: Borough of Queenscliffe, City of Greater Geelong, Golden Plains Shire and the Surf Coast Shire. Through a network of the Geelong Library & Heritage Centre, 15 community libraries, two mobiles and a website, the GRLC provides free, universal access to lifelong learning, reading and discovery. Designed to be an inspiring, multipurpose space, the centre will be many things to many different people: a place to meet and socialise; to read and study; to attend events; and use new technologies. Each level is unique with gathering places, reading spaces, the latest technology, spectacular collections, children's and youth hubs, function zones, café and more.  Photo credit: Emma Cross



















































The libraries were judged by an expert panel of six judges.

The process was rigorous and every entry was examined individually. Consideration was given to a wide range of factors, including the objectives, the community response, value for money, size of the budget, new build versus a refurbishment, innovation, quality of the design, sense of place and how the structure fitted into its environment.

Sue McKerracher, Chief Executive Officer of ALIA, said: 'There were some outstanding buildings and interior designs; all had seen an uplift in usage; most incorporated sustainability and accessibility features.'

The highly commended libraries in each category are:

Public library:

  • Rockdale Library - Bayside  Council, Rockdale, NSW | CK Design International in association with Leffler Simes Architects and Stevenson and Turner  
  • Sunshine Library - Brimbank Libraries, Sunshine, VIC |  Lyons Principal Consultant (Architects)
  • Mary Davies Library and Community Centre - City of Rockingham Library Service, Baldvis, WA | Site Architecture
  • Geelong Library & Heritage Centre, Geelong Regional Library Corporation, Geelong, VIC| ARM Architecture
  • North Lakes Library, Moreton Bay Region Libraries, North Lakes, QLD | PDT Architects
  • Success Public Library, City of Cockburn, Success WA  | Bollig Design Group
  • Woollahra Library Double Bay, NSW | BVN Architecture

School library:

  • Potter Library, All Hallows’ School, Brisbane, QLD| Fulton Trotter Architects
  • The Information Resource Centre, Carey Baptist Grammar School, Kew, VIC | Hayball
  • The Learning Hub, St Andrew's Anglican College, Peregian Springs, QLD | Wilsons Architects
  • Junior School Library - Duncraig Campus, St Stephen's School, Duncraig, WA| CODA Studio
  • Research Learning Centre, Brisbane Girls Grammar School, Brisbane, QLD | m3architecture

Academic library:

  • Reid Library, University of Western Australia, Crawley, WA| Schin Architects


  • Barwon Health Library, Geelong, VIC | Daryl Pelchin Architects


Background for editors:

Electronic press kit - background on winners| images | profile of judges  

Read more about the ALIA Library Design Awards Conference 2017

View the gallery of the 33 nominations for the awards.


About the Australian Library and Information Association

The Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) is the professional organisation for the Australian library and information services sector. With 5,000 members across Australia, we provide the national voice of the profession in the development, promotion and delivery of quality library and information services, through leadership, advocacy and mutual support.



Heather Wellard, Communications Manager: | 02 6215 8225 | 0409830 439



Monday 19 June 2017 5:00pm