Next chapter of CityLibraries begins with Riverway Library opening

Date published: 28 April 2023

Townsville’s latest premier showcase of community-centred design will be unveiled this Saturday, as Townsville City Council opens its modern Riverway Library, a new space to connect, cultivate and transform the culture of the city.

The construction of the facility kicked off in May last year following an internationally award-winning consultation with community to ensure Townsville locals had their say on the design of the modern library.

Mayor Jenny Hill said co-locating the modern and innovative library with the Pinnacles Gallery, Riverway lagoons, sports facilities, boardwalks and open spaces helped Council grow its next major activity precinct for families in the city.

“With more than 480 facilitated programs, 600,000 loans, 6500 hours of booked meetings and 400,000 visits by families, individuals, entrepreneurs and community groups each year, there’s no doubt that modern libraries are catalysts for connecting people, information and ideas,” Cr Hill said.

“Council is focused on developing high quality, accessible and diverse places where people can work, play, learn and earn and this precinct ticks all of those boxes.

“The modern and innovative library space includes a creative hub for locals to create and record audio and video, 24-hour meeting and study rooms, a business lounge and parenting room, all designed to support locals’ professional and artistic growth.

“We’ve also included 24/7 reservation pick up lockers, which are available outside the café so our library customers are able to pick up their reserved items at the time of day that suits them best.”

The new library will open with a community day tomorrow including an appearance from Australia’s most popular family entertainment export, Bluey.

Community and Cultural Development Committee chairperson Ann-Maree Greaney said securing Bluey for the event was a coup for Townsville’s premier family and community destination.

“As the home to the city’s best swimming lagoons, boardwalks, barbecues, gardens, nationally-rated sporting fields, Riverway Stadium and now our modern Riverway Library, the Riverway precinct is a stand-out community and cultural hub,” Cr Greaney said.

“With nearly 50,000 families calling Townsville home, I know that this addition to the Riverway precinct will be well-used both now and into the future.

“Accessibility was a strong focus throughout the design and construction phase, ensuring visitors of all abilities can safely use all spaces within the new library. This includes accessible toilets and wheelchair-accessible entry into all meeting spaces.

“As a parent myself, I know how convenient it is to be able to take the family out to a one-stop shop. With the Riverway Library opening, you’ll be able to stop by the library to borrow some books or get some work done, collaborate with other creatives, head to the café to grab a coffee, take a look through Pinnacles Gallery, and then go for a swim or stop by the playground, all within steps of each other.”

Relocating the library to Riverway has been a long-term financial decision as Council owns the Riverway Arts Precinct building, lowering expenses for community as we will no longer have to pay rent to house our library.

The $8.5 million project was fully funded by Townsville City Council across two financial years, with works awarded to Hutchinson Builders, creating 12 jobs for Townsville locals.

The new Riverway Library also complements the city’s two other public libraries at Aitkenvale and Flinders St, providing another location for locals and visitors to access books, DVDs, music, Wi-Fi, meeting spaces and community programs.

Riverway Library opens this Saturday from 9am. For more information about what’s on offer at Riverway Library, head to the Programs & Activities page.

Cr Ann-Maree Greaney and Mayor Jenny Hill at the brand new Riverway Library.
Caption: Cr Ann-Maree Greaney and Mayor Jenny Hill at the brand new Riverway Library.