About the project
Through a partnership with Woolworths, we are delivering a new Rosanna library, double the size of the existing library with a much needed expansion to the children’s area as well as co-working and study spaces, community meeting rooms, reading areas, quiet spaces and much more. The new library is proposed to be a two storey, 1,300sqm building that incorporates indoor and outdoor spaces in the heart of Rosanna.
The existing Rosanna Library was built in the early 1970’s and has been a much loved place for local learning and connection. Over time, the area has changed and grown, as has the way people access and use libraries. Council has been aware that to meet current and future needs the existing library would need significant upgrades. This partnership provides an opportunity to deliver a new and improved library much sooner than anticipated.
The Community Engagement Plan (CEP) approved by Council informs the community and key stakeholders and gains feedback to inform the redevelopment of the library and ancillary projects within the Turnham Avenue precinct. This plan consists of two key engagement components, including:
- Strategic community engagement around the library and ancillary projects.
- Statutory engagement and processes around the sale of the land and the planning scheme amendment.
We undertook two key stages of engagement:
Stage 1: INFORM - Throughout April 2021 we held 9 information sessions to ensure the community was informed about the project. During these sessions we answered your questions, explained who is involved, why it is happening and the anticipated benefits. We also prepared a FAQ fact sheet, answered questions via phone and email and created this dedicated project page as a central point for information on the Rosanna Library Redevelopment.
Stage 2: CONSULT - Throughout May and early June, we asked for your input and ideas about what you would like to see or do in a new library and how you would like it to look and feel:
The consultation and communication activities in stage 2 were effective in engaging with over 1,300 people. The activities and consultation outcomes are detailed in the Community Engagement Report.
The information and engagement opportunities ensured the Rosanna Library project was highly visible and talked about in the community.
It generated one of our highest ever social media engagements and Shaping Banyule received 4,500 views.
What you said
- While some did express concerns about the partnership approach and sale of public land, overall there is strong and positive community sentiment towards the redevelopment of the library.
- People are genuinely excited about the library development and identified a range of opportunities for the library to explore or consider.
- Key findings for stage 2 are detailed in the Community Engagement Report.
We are now moving into the next stage, the sale of land which is a statutory process.
Initial concepts have been developed that show what the building could look like and how the spaces could be used.
Sale of land
Council proposes to sell 828m2 parcel of the Rosanna Library Site to Fabcot Pty Ltd (Fabcot) (wholly owned subsidiary of Woolworths Limited) for no less than market value (plus GST) to facilitate the development of a Woolworths supermarket on the adjacent site at 44 Turnham Avenue and 47-51 Douglas Street, Rosanna.
In return, Fabcot will construct and deliver a new library to a ‘warm shell’ to agreed specifications on land to be retained by Council to an agreed construction cost. The library construction cost will be offset against the land purchase price. The new library will be a two storey, 1,300m2 building that incorporates indoor and outdoor spaces. In addition, Fabcot will construct the basement carpark at its cost. The carpark will be a shared use carpark with Council under a Carpark Management Agreement.
We also prepared a FAQ fact sheet, as a central point for information on the Sale of Land - Rosanna Library Redevelopment.
As part broader improvements to the area, upgrades are also planned for The Heidelberg Theatre. The theatre is occupied by the Heidelberg Theatre Company (HTC) a non-professional company that was established in 1952 and has occupied the theatre in Rosanna since 1982 under a lease arrangement with Council. The Theatre plays an important role in strengthening our local community and arts and culture in Banyule.
In recent years, major projects like the level crossing removal and new Rosanna Station and Council's Lower Plenty Rd & Beetham Pde streetscape upgrades have changed the look and feel of the area and greatly improved transport options. Like most major projects, these works have been disruptive but have also set the scene for further activation of the shopping village and surrounding area.
In 2016, Woolworths, who own the land next door to the library at 44 Turnham Ave, applied for and were granted a planning permit for a new supermarket. Construction of the supermarket has yet to start.
In late 2019, Woolworths approached Council with the opportunity to partner and deliver a new Rosanna library much sooner than previously planned. In December 2020 Council agreed to enter into a partnership with Woolworths to deliver the new library. The partnership involves:
- Proposed sale of a portion of Council owned land (828sqm) to Woolworths
- Woolworths building the new library next to the supermarket
- Council retaining full ownership of the library.