Visitors to the State Library will have a new way to access collections, exhibitions and events, with the opening of two new entrances in spring 2018.
More than 2 million annual visitors will soon be able to enter the Library from Russell Street, stepping into a bright and vibrant co-working area, with new coffee cart and retail space.
Closed to the public for more than a decade, the new Russell Street entrance and welcome zone will make it easier to visit the Library’s collection zone, with direct access to the popular Redmond Barry reading room. It will also be the new home for Readings – 2016 International Bookshop of the Year.
La Trobe Street entrance
The Library’s second new entrance will open on La Trobe Street, providing universal access to Australia’s oldest and busiest state library. Visitors will be able to explore the new world-class Victoria Gallery, endowed by the John and Myriam Wylie Foundation, from the La Trobe Street entrance. Opening in 2019, the gallery will showcase the best of the Library’s collection.
A new special events gallery will also be accessible through the new Library entrances. The Isabella Fraser Room, named after the Library’s first listed female staff member, will host unique weddings, corporate events, business breakfasts and more.
Changes inside the Library
Construction has now commenced across the Library site, with changes starting to appear in the foyer and eastern end of the building.
Site investigation works have commenced in The Ian Potter Queen’s Hall, with hoarding installed in the Swanston Street foyer and Palmer Hall to accommodate the area where a new lift will be installed. Once completed, the lift will provide universal access to this magnificent heritage reading room located above the foyer.
Closed since 2003, The Ian Potter Queen’s Hall is being refurbished to reveal its heritage architecture and celebrate its 19th-century decorative scheme. It will open to the public in spring 2019 as a public reading room.
The Library will remain open throughout the Vision 2020 redevelopment. Any changes to services, collection access or programs during the construction period will be published on our service alerts page.