NSW Government announces funding to transform the State Library

Almost $12 million of new funding has been announced by the NSW Government to enhance visitor access and experience at the State Library.

This new funding brings the total to more than $24 million invested by the Government this year, and will go to support a range of projects including a new underground auditorium, photography gallery and expanded bookshop, café and foyer.

Minister for the Arts Don Harwin said, “The State Library of NSW is a much-loved state institution and we’re investing an additional $11.9 million in works to enable better access to its significant collections and open up new facilities to attract even more visitors to this historic building.”

State Librarian John Vallance welcomed the additional funding to support upgrades to the Library’s public facilities to improve visitor experiences.

“We are delighted at this new investment from the NSW Government which will allow us to build a new 350-seat auditorium for gatherings and conferences (replacing the existing Metcalfe auditorium) in an area beneath the Mitchell Library Reading Room,” Dr Vallance said.

Additionally, the entrance level in the Library’s Macquarie Street building will be renovated, to allow us to welcome and support the growing number of readers and visitors. The Library plans to expand both the bookshop and the café as part of these renovations.

The State Library will continue to work with expert heritage consultants and architects throughout the building program, which also includes:

  • a new public link between the Library’s two buildings
  • a function venue on top of the Mitchell Building — scheduled to open in mid-2021, and
  • refurbishment of the Mitchell Library Reading Room.

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