New Penrith Library project's blog

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Official opening of the John Phillips Library on the Penrith Campus

Between October 2014 when the interior was being created, to February 2015 when we opened the doors to the first students, and 1 April 2015 which marked the official naming and opening of the John Phillips Library on the Western Sydney University Penrith campus, quite a bit has happened!

October 2014 means carpet, shelving and soaring staircases

Our sense of excitement is building as heavy equipment leaves the majority of the building and the true sense of the size of the interiors comes to the fore.  Despite the recent wild weather, the new Penrith library is forging ahead.

In the collection areas, carpet is being laid and the shelving is being installed in preparation for the move and merge of the Ward and Allen libraries collections later this year. Tucked away behind these, the dedicated quiet and silent study areas are coming to life.

September 2014 - What a difference a week makes

Evidence of how quickly progress is being made as we move towards the conclusion of the building creation is highlighted in these pictures.  Only a week or so since the last pictures were taken, and the differences are beginning to show..

September 2014 means walls, stairs, windows and more

In the three months since the last posting here, a lot has been happening at the site of the new Penrith Library.

As the exterior brickwork is completed, the blue wrapping is coming down (yes, the stealthy blend-into-the-sky shadecloth is not a permanent feature) allowing the colour of the new Library to be on display.  The size and number of windows in the building may also be seen, showing just how much natural light will be in the study areas.

Interiors start to take shape

As May comes to a close, the promise and size of the spaces within the new Library building are being revealed.  Interior form work is being progressively removed, revealing the height ans size of each floor.  Non-structural walls are being erected, marking out the spaces for group study rooms.  If you look closely at the images you might glimpse the many floor boxes, the majority of which will provide access to power for you to use.

March 2014 and the last floor is poured

The dry weather between January and March 2014 has been good for the new library, and great progress has been made on the fabric of the building.

All floors have now been poured, and work on internal walls on the ground floor is underway.  It's exciting to see the size and shape of the library coming together, with a sense of how it fits into the landscape and the views students using the building will have emerging.  Autumn is upon us though, and as the rains come down we here in the Library watch anxiously that progress continues as planned.

January 2014 and the weather has been kind

Despite a typical Australian summer of some 40C + days and some days of rain, progress on our new Library continues at speed.

The slabs for the ground floor, level 1 and our first mezzanine floor at level 2 are now poured, giving a sense of the true scale of the building.

As the building continues to take shape, the essential interior decisions continue to be made.

Floors and form work

The weather has been kind to us, and the building is taking shape at a rapid rate.

The ground floor has been poured, as have the exposed concrete columns supporting the upper levels. The majority of the floor for level one is down, and we can see already the views students on this level will have from the east-facing group study area.  Next comes level two, our first mezzanine floor housing the second level of the book stacks.

What will the new Library look like?

With the groundwork well underway, it’s time to give a glimpse of what the interior of the new library is intended to be.   Selection of the final furniture and detail design of bespoke joinery is still in the detailing stage, however we do have an idea of what the layout of the interior will be.

Emerging from the hillside

The new building is emerging from the hillside as excavation is completed, underground rainwater retention tanks installed and essential (though mundane) services such as water, sewer and power/data cabling access established.

Dirt, rock and more dirt being removed