Australia’s best library designs revealed in 2019 Library Design Awards shortlist

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Cobram Library and Learning Centre by Cohen Leigh Architects.

Cobram Library and Learning Centre by Cohen Leigh Architects. Image: courtesy ALIA

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Centenary Library, Anglican Church Grammar School by Brand and Slater Architects (now BPSN Architects).

Centenary Library, Anglican Church Grammar School by Brand and Slater Architects (now BPSN Architects). Image: courtesy ALIA

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St Andrew’s Cathedral School Library, St Andrew’s Cathedral School by Allen Jack and Cottier Architects.

St Andrew’s Cathedral School Library, St Andrew’s Cathedral School by Allen Jack and Cottier Architects. Image: courtesy ALIA

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Bunjil Place Library by FJMT.

Bunjil Place Library by FJMT. Image: courtesy ALIA

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Laidley Library by Fulton Trotter Architects.

Laidley Library by Fulton Trotter Architects. Image: courtesy ALIA

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Shellharbour City Libraries by Designinc, Lacoste and Stevenson and Turf Design Studio.

Shellharbour City Libraries by Designinc, Lacoste and Stevenson and Turf Design Studio.

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Caulfield Library Monash by John Wardle Architects and TCL Studio.

Caulfield Library Monash by John Wardle Architects and TCL Studio. Image: courtesy Monash University

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Sir Louis Matheson Libraryby Cox Architecture, TCL Studio and Peter Elliott Architecture.

Sir Louis Matheson Libraryby Cox Architecture, TCL Studio and Peter Elliott Architecture. Image: courtesy ALIA

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University of Queensland Library by DWP.

University of Queensland Library by DWP. Image: courtesy University of Queensland

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The shortlist for the Australian Library and Information Association’s (ALIA) Library Design Awards have been released.

The awards, organized by the Australian Library and Information Association in partnership with the Australian Public Library Alliance and the Council of Australian University Librarians, were created in 2017 to showcase contemporary library buildings.

The awards are split into three categories – school library, public library and academic library. A fourth award, the ALIA Members’ Choice, went to the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre in 2017.

Caulfield Library Monash by John Wardle Architects and TCL Studio. Image:  courtesy Monash University

Entries were open to all libraries in Australia that have been built, renovated or refurbished between 1 July 2016 and 30 June 2018. 

The jury for the award comprises senior library leaders and design professionals including Philip Follent (life fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects) and Kylie Legge (director of Place Partners).

The winners will be announced at a ceremony to be held as part of the Asia Pacific Architecture Forum at the State Library of Queensland on 14 March, 2019. The forum is an initiative of Architecture Media and the State Library.

The awards will coincide with a one-day symposium on library design. Speakers include Libby Sander (assistant professor of organizational behaviour at Bond University and founder of Future of Work), Traci Engel Lesneski (principal of MSR), Gulcin Cribb (university librarian at Singapore Management University) and Robyn Frappell (head of learning centre at St. Joseph’s Nudgee College). 

2019 ALIA Library Design Awards shortlist:

School Library

Centenary Library, Anglican Church Grammar School – Brand and Slater Architects (now BPSN Architects)

St Andrew’s Cathedral School Library, St Andrew’s Cathedral School – Allen Jack and Cottier Architects

Public Library

Bunjil Place Library – FJMT

Cobram Library and Learning Centre – Cohen Leigh Architects  

Laidley Library – Fulton Trotter Architects

Shellharbour City Libraries – Designinc, Lacoste and Stevenson and Turf Design Studio

Academic Library

Caulfield Library Monash – John Wardle Architects and TCL Studio

Sir Louis Matheson Library – Cox Architecture with landscapes by TCL Studio and Peter Elliott Architecture

University of Queensland Library – DWP

The winners of the awards will be announced on March 2019.


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