York’s latest new library will open its doors to local residents for the first time in early January 2023.
The new library in Haxby and Wigginton will open from Tuesday January 3, once construction work to co-locate a permanent library at the Oaken Grove Community Center is complete.
The project – a partnership between York City Council, Explore York Library and Archives and Haxby & Wigginton Youth & Community Association – will replace the former Haxby and Wigginton Library, which was closed in 2016 for public safety reasons .
The new library will be open six days a week and will include a new reading cafe, run by Explore, providing the community and patrons visiting the center with a place to relax and enjoy refreshments both indoors and outdoors.
Key construction features include:
- A new extension to the community center which will house the new library and reading cafe at the front of the building and community rooms for rent at the rear.
- A new large central entrance with improved storage space for buggies and buggies leading to a central cafe and seating area for all to enjoy.
- A library for children and for adults, with new shelves, nooks and crannies to explore for children and a separate space for teenagers,
- Free PCs to reserve and 10,000 books to borrow.
- A new kitchen to support the new Reading Cafe offering barista style coffees, snacks. The café can also offer hot meals or catering for users of meeting rooms and parties
- An outdoor terrace will provide a peaceful and relaxing sanctuary to sit and read, enjoy a cup of coffee or catch up with friends.
- Free extended public Wi-Fi.
- Improvements to the fabric of the existing building included a new roof which proved necessary to secure the building in the long term.
- The energy efficiency of the building has been improved with improved insulation, LED lighting throughout, new aluminum double glazed windows to also improve the appearance of the building and reduce future maintenance costs.
- A new, more efficient heating system for the building.
- Renovated toilets.
- Reconfiguration and refitting of existing common rooms with new acoustic partitions to improve flexibility of use, new flooring and decoration.
- Two newly marked disabled spaces in the car park.
- New covered bicycle shelter.
Councilor Darryl Smalley, executive member for culture, recreation and communities at York City Council, said:
“I am delighted that construction has progressed well and that we now have an opening date for the new site.
“This initiative is an exciting collaboration. Through a significant investment in a valuable community building, we can put a library back at the heart of the local community and help local residents of all ages foster their love of lifelong learning. It’s York once again bucking the trend – I’m immensely proud that we’re a city that opens up libraries and invests in community spaces, not shut them down.
Sarah Garbacz, chief operating officer of Explore York Libraries and Archives, said:
“We look forward to opening our doors and welcoming back our customers, old and new. As well as a brand new Reading Cafe and more books, our fantastic program of high quality family events and activities will return, from Rhymetimes for the under 5s to Lego Clubs for the kids and craft clubs and author events for adults. It’s really great news to be back to bring the community of Haxby and Wigginton together.
Lisa Wellington, Community Services Manager for Haxby & Wigginton Youth & Community Association in Oaken Grove, said:
“We very much look forward to welcoming everyone back to the Center and thank our users for their patience during the closure. Our youth team will resume youth sessions in the new and improved building and we look forward to re-launching our varied program of activities.
“This is an important milestone in the life of HWYCA and Oaken Grove as we continue our partnership with Explore, and thank everyone who has helped make this exciting development possible.”