Turanga schmidt hammer lassen architects architectus christchurch library dezeen 2364 col 9
Christchurch City Council

Tūranga - Christchurch's world class library

Often viewed as the essential ‘third place’ for a community, modern libraries are more than just book storage and lending facilities. For Christchurch especially, the central city library is a symbol of hope, a welcoming place for everyone, and a place to belong.

Key information


Christchurch City Council


October 2016 - October 2018


9850m2 over five levels

Total value:

$92.7 million


60 staff at any one time + 2,600 visitors per day


5 Green Star certification

Watch case study video here

CPA Chch Central Library 28
About the project

The flagship for Christchurch City Libraries, Tūranga supports 19 community, digital and mobile libraries around the city. The ground floor provides an inviting space that links through to the neighboring Performing Arts Precinct and Convention Centre. 

A cafe, magazine lending and enticing technology exhibits are on display here. Up the wide, crisscrossing, timber-clad stairs, the first floor houses a vibrant children’s area, a 200-seat community arena, exhibition space, and areas for families and youth.

The top three floors house digital, specialist and print collections, and meeting and recreation spaces. The council opted to pursue 5 Green Star certification for the library. Achieving this is a rigorous process. Every step in the design and construction program requires consideration and measurement. And with robust seismic engineering, it is also a building to last - important for a citytorn apart by natural disasters.

Resized turanga schmidt hammer lassen architects architectus christchurch library dezeen 2364 col 12 1704x2556
Resized Chch Central Library5763 2
CPA Chch Central Library 22
CPA Chch Central Library 05

"Tūranga really reflects what Christchurch people wanted out of a new central library… We love the space. It’s a unique building in New Zealand"

Chris Hay



CPA Chch Central Library 06
CPA Chch Central Library 29

Work with a partner that delivers on time, on budget and beyond expectation.