Brooklyn Library faces the axe

KATIE CHAPMAN
Last updated 15:12 20/02/2013

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The closure of Brooklyn's earthquake-prone library is on the cards as Wellington City Council eyes next year's budgets.

The council has begun work on its draft annual plan, which sets the budget for 2013-14. Councillors will debate the plan next month, before sending the finalised draft put for public consultation. The final plan will be adopted in June.

Among the proposals put forward by officers for councillors to consider is the closure of the Brooklyn Library.

Community facilities portfolio leader Councillor Justin Lester said the idea had been raised because the building was earthquake-prone.

However, councillors were wary about removing a facility from the suburb.

''Their recommendation was to look at closing that now, and we have asked them to explore options.''

The state of the building meant any strengthening work would render the building unsuitable for a library, as it would require columns being installed, disrupting the open-plan layout needed for a library.

''The status quo is not going to work.''

However, officers were exploring other options for the area, such as relocating the library to another building, combining services with school, or closing the library entirely.

The future of Wadestown Library is also being considered this year.

Mr Lester said three options were being considered - the status quo, downscaling the library and establishing a small community centre in the building, or closing the library and making the building entirely a community centre.

The suggestions were likely to be controversial, but his preference would be for the status quo, he said.

The argument for down-scaling or closing Wadestown Library would be to save money, but he doubted it would be worth the ''amount of hurt that you go through trying'', he said.

Contact Katie Chapman
Wellington reporter
Email: katie.chapman@dompost.co.nz
Twitter: @katiechapman28

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