Construction is now complete on an open public courtyard and stand alone 800m2 library building on Waiheke Island.


The design draws on the imagery of books arranged under a canopy of pohutakawa trees as for its sculptural form, a concept that is strengthened by simple low maintenance, low energy sustainable design initiatives to provide a high quality user environment of enduring value.

The library is entered through a sheltered courtyard along with other existing amenities such as a theatre, art gallery, cinema and restaurant. On entering the library the simple layout of central book shelves surrounded by a variety of seating, studying and meeting spaces is clearly apparent and easily navigated.  A children’s reading platform rises above the book shelves and creates a playful environment as a pirates crow’s nest, Romeo and Juliet balcony or any other scene that may come to the imagination.


Large sliding doors open up the north side of the building providing a seamless indoor/outdoor flow to the new courtyard and amphitheatre space where stories might be read, outdoor chess played or music and theatre performed.


Orientation of the library has been considered to provide maximum sunlight in to the building in winter with carefully proportioned roof overhangs providing shade in summer. The height and depth of the building has also been optimised to provide the best possible natural daylight and ventilation. Windows are all automatically controlled but can still be adjusted to suit individual comfort levels.


All rain is collected of the roof, stored in three large underground tanks and supplies all the water needed for the building including a reservoir for firefighting. All windows are double glazed, roofs and walls highly insulated and an array of photovoltaic panels has been designed to provide all the energy required to run the building during summer.


The local board publicly supported the design during a very successful community consultation and engagement process. Dialogue with Ngati Paoa iwi in regard to sensitive historical ancestral issues specific to the site led to sightlines significant to them being incorporated in to the open space courtyard design and marked by an installation of beautifully carved pou.

Magnificent artwork by internationally renowned local artist Kazu Nakagawa has been fully integrated in to the façade, wall linings and floor of the building. 

Waiheke Library Artworks and Library Env



2016 Property Council NZ Rider Levett Bucknall Property Industry Awards: Resene Green Building Property Award Merit - Waiheke Library

2015 NZ Wood Resene Timber Design Award: Commercial Architectural Excellence

2015 NZ Wood Resene Timber Design Award: Resene Overal Supreme Award

Pacific Environments is committed to architectural design excellence, creating inspiring 'fit for purpose' built environment solutions for our clients. 


Sustainability, lifestyle and the creation of enduring investment value is core to our design philosophy.

  • Grey Facebook Icon
  • Grey LinkedIn Icon
  • Grey Houzz Icon
  • Grey Instagram Icon
  • Grey Pinterest Icon

09 308 0070  |  info@penzl.co.nz

     c  Pacific Environments NZ Ltd