Have Your Say: Ringwood Library Learning and Cultural Centre
Between January - March 2013 Maroondah City Council consulted with over 1500 community members on their vision for the Ringwood Library, Learning and Cultural Centre. The community shared with council:
- what they would like to do in the new centre;
- what the centre should look and feel like; and
- what will make the centre a great place to visit.
People shared their views and ideas in our online survey, completed surveys at Ringwood Library, Croydon Library and Maroondah City Council Customer Service Centres, or completed one-on-one surveys in Ringwood Metropolitan Activity Centre and Croydon Activity Centre. Key findings are outlined below.
Vision and aspirations
The community aspires for a safe, welcoming, inclusive place that provides a diversity of learning and social experiences and settings, that is a hub for community interaction.
Activities and use
Learning activities should be the primary focus of the centre – in all forms, from self-directed reading and study, to classes and seminars, to active participation and creation through arts activities. Opportunities to socialise are important for learning from each other.
Spaces and resources
A diversity of spaces is required to support passive and active uses. There needs to be spaces where people can express themselves through music and dance, as well as quiet, peaceful spaces for reading, study and reflection. Drop-in spaces, as well as bookable spaces will be important to ensuring inclusion and support for new activities. Technology – Wi-Fi and computers – need to be integrated throughout the centre.
Internal design and functionality
Consideration of those less mobile, and different cultural groups will be important in ensuring the centre is accessible and welcoming to all. Internal site lines and transparency will be important for a sense of safety and making the activities of the centre visible and welcoming to all.
External access and interface
Careful consideration for access and approach by different transport means to the centre, including parking, will be important in encouraging visitation – especially those less mobile and parents with children.
Look and feel
Community has aspirations for an open, peaceful centre full of natural light, and connected to greenery – an escape from the hustle and bustle of the street, in a homely, yet contemporary fit-out.
Friendly welcoming staff that understand user needs will be crucial to the ongoing success of the centre. Partnerships with community groups, schools and businesses offer great opportunities for programing and resourcing.