09 Oct 2018

The grand opening of Christchurch’s new central library, Tūranga, is now only days away, with the doors set to swing open to the public at 1pm this Friday.

Tūranga opening: What you need to know

  • Doors open to the public at 1pm on Friday 12 October
  • The opening ceremony will be live-streamed online from 12noon on Friday
  • Two tours will be available on Friday, Saturday and Sunday – a full 45-minute tour through all five floors of Tūranga, and a shorter 15-minute tour covering just the ground and first floors.
  • Both tours include stairs, and access to the building will be via Cathedral Square only.
  • Last entry time to complete the tour on Friday is 7pm, and on Saturday and Sunday 4pm.
  • Keep an eye on the Council’s Facebook event page for updates throughout the days.
  • Travel info is available on the Council’s event webpage.

A special opening ceremony will be live-streamed ahead of the opening on the Council’s website from 12 noon.

Visitors on Friday, Saturday and Sunday will be able to take a special walk-through tour of all five floors of the library, sampling some of the high-tech services along the way, including virtual reality experiences, 3D printers and the Discovery Wall.

Head of Libraries and Information Carolyn Robertson says people can expect to be blown away by what they find.

“We deliberately haven’t given too much away in the lead-up because we want people to walk through the doors and experience that wow-factor for the first time.

“The technology is amazing, the interior of the building itself is stunning, and the cultural art on display throughout is wonderful. It’s all in all an incredible experience, and we can’t wait to see the look on people’s faces as they discover it for themselves.”

Visitors will be able to choose from either a full 45-minute tour through all five floors of Tūranga, or a shorter 15-minute tour covering just the ground and first floors.

Both tours will include stairs and access to the building will be via Cathedral Square only.

On Friday and Saturday, The Breeze and More FM will be on-site to ramp up the entertainment with special activities, giveaways and music, while Tūranga's very own Foundation café, as well as food trucks, will be on-hand to satisfy people’s cravings.

On Friday night from 7pm, the architects behind Tūranga will share the story of the library’s design, then on Saturday from 3pm, award-winning author Gareth Ward will present a talk about his life as a storyteller, magician, hypnotist, Royal Marine Commando and police officer. Both events will be held in the TSB Space on the Hapori (Community) Floor, Level 1.

“We’re expecting a very busy and exciting time throughout this Friday and the weekend, so we’re recommending visitors plan ahead and keep an eye on the Council’s Facebook page throughout the days,” says Ms Robertson.