Shared Frankton library proposed

With Wakatipu High School relocating to Frankton and future population growth projected to centre around the suburb, the Queenstown Lakes District Council has decided to discuss the idea of a shared library with the school.

At the council's meeting in Wanaka last week Cr Cath Gilmour was successful in adding to the list of recommendations passed that the council should begin discussions with the Ministry of Education and the high school's board on sharing a library.

The council's library task force produced recommendations from its review of the district's library services.

One, to ''strengthen the library's role as a community hub'', included building one at Frankton.

''There has been discussion for some years about a new library at Frankton,'' the review said.

A business case needed to assess whether there were partnership opportunities for a shared facility.

''If the new school is considered an ideal partner, this will mean moving quickly to develop the case and bring forward any potential expenditure.''

The review added another option was to locate the library next to the Events Centre ''to make a big hub for council community and recreational services''.

An estimated cost of $3 million for a Frankton library was included in the review but the cost could be reduced if a partnership could be agreed.

In the ''long term'' five years plus recommendation, the review urged the council to build a Frankton library and seek to include related facilities such as a learning centre and a cafe.

Council senior communications adviser Michele Poole said the budget for a library at Frankton was in the council's 10-year plan as a project for 2019 and the timing would be examined in the next long-term plan, in a year.

The new school would be opening in 2018.

Speaking after the meeting, Cr Gilmour said discussion was needed earlier and that was the reason for the added recommendation.

''We need to start the discussion with the Ministry of Education and the high school board pretty much straight away. It isn't going to be something that we can put off for five years.''