Sth Dunedin library site blessed

Discussing plans for construction of the South Dunedin library and community centre are (from...
Discussing plans for construction of the South Dunedin library and community centre are (from left) Ōtākou elder Edward Ellison, Dunedin Mayor Jules Radich and Positive Property director Justin Stott. PHOTO: STEPHEN JAQUIERY
Groundworks are imminent for the planned South Dunedin library and community centre, due to open next year.

The site in King Edward St was blessed yesterday morning ahead of site works starting.

Positive Property director Justin Stott said judging from the interest in yesterday’s ceremony, "it’s very exciting for the community".

"I’m pleased to be part of it," Mr Stott said.

"It’s an example of a good working partnership between public and private."

The Dunedin City Council announced in August last year it had agreed to buy a building to be constructed at 38-156 King Edward St, the site of the old Wolfenden and Russell building, as the home for the library complex.

Positive Property bought the site after a fire there in 2020.

The firm is to construct the two-storey library and community centre to a shell stage and the council will then complete the fit-out.

The full project is estimated to be worth $21.4million.

A library complex is a long-awaited facility in South Dunedin.

The council had intended to build it at the corner of Macandrew Rd and King Edward St, but this would have taken longer to complete and cost more.

Dunedin Mayor Jules Radich said the complex would make a big difference to the South Dunedin area.

"It will add vibrancy and attractiveness to the shopping area here," he said.

"It’s not just a library. It’s a community hub that will contribute to the wellbeing of people in the area and their learning.

"The overall result will be one that the South Dunedin community will be proud of."

The fit-out concept is under development.

Some of the possible uses for the centre include community meeting rooms, learning and creativity spaces, and a recording studio.

Te Rūnanga o Ōtākou ūpoko (head) Edward Ellison led the ceremony.


Several city councillors were also present.