Celebrations were held in Geelong over the weekend of November 21-22 for the official opening of the new library and heritage centre.
Affectionately dubbed ‘The Dome,’ due its remarkable design, the centre received a high level of praise from those in attendance including dignitaries, families and locals alike.
Member for Corangamite, Sarah Henderson, described the library as “A wonderful and inspiring building, which will become a major hub for learning and innovation.”
Chair of Geelong Libraries, Councillor Andy Richards introduced the library to the public, focussing on how the building positively shifts Geelong’s profile “… from industrial town to creative centre.”
All five levels of the centre were open for public exploration and with weather conditions being fine and sunny, many of those in attendance took the opportunity to enjoy the panoramic views over Corio Bay and the You Yangs, available from the spacious deck on the top floor.
A family friendly event, interactive attractions included a contemporary dance troop “Blink” and the Geelong Children’s Choir, face painting, robots and living human statues, which kept the crowd entertained as they made their way through building.
The architects responsible for the design, ARM Architecture, hosted a public forum titled ‘Creating the Dome’ and speakers, Ian McDougall, ARM Founding Director and Technical Director Wayne Sanderson, were thrilled that the public lecture was booked out.
Mr McDougall and Mr Sanderson covered how the building was envisaged and fielded questions regarding the distinctive crystalline glass shard faςade, the construction process and what environmentally sustainable elements had been incorporated.
Sustainability was a strong focus for the project and Umow Lai was crucial in the process, working with ARM Architecture to ensure that the library achieved a 5 Star Green Star Public Building v1 Design rating from the Green Building Council of Australia.
Located in the city’s popular arts precinct bounded by Little Malop Street, Johnstone Park, the Peace Memorial and Art Gallery, the new centre links the old with the new, and in the process, sets an exciting benchmark for Geelong.
Umow Lai provided services Engineering, Security and Sustainability services for the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre.