The original Shirley Library opened in July 1981, on a site now covered by The Palms.
By 1995 a new building was underway on a different site next to the developing Palms Mall.
In January 29 1996, the new library opened in a purpose-built building shared with the Christchurch City Council Shirley Service Centre.
– Shirley Library is currently located in the carpark of The Palms (Burwood Ward).
– Papanui Library via Cranford Street (5.4 km from 10 Shirley Road):
– Fendalton Library via Innes Road (6 km from 10 Shirley Road):
Until the latest Ward boundary changes, the 10 Shirley Road site was in the Innes Ward, but is now in the Central Ward.
There are currently no local ‘suburban’ sized Christchurch City Libraries in the Innes Ward.
Christchurch City Council Libraries Sites:
Year Built, Building Area, Capacity & Population Density
Shirley | Year Build: 1995, Building Area: 1060 m2, Capacity: 200, Pop Density /km2: 2300
– https://www.10shirleyroad.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/SouthLibraryEarthquakeRepairOptionsReportJoannaGould.pdf, Page 8
The 10 Shirley Road site is central to our 14 local education providers, all are within 3km of the 10 Shirley Road site:
Shirley Library is considered a ‘suburban’ library, but there is a limited book selection, no board room, meeting rooms or learning centre (flexible spaces).
– ‘Suburban’ library: Catchment ranges from 1.5km to 3km radius; services population range from 15,000 – 40,000.
Services could include a variety of activities and flexible spaces.
UDS – Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy and Action Plan 2007.
– ‘Neighbourhood’ library: Catchment ranges from 1km to 1.5km radius; serves population from 10,000 to 12,000 people. Services could include small, broad-spanning collections and a range of activities.
“…(2015) Council/ECan planning with mall owners in Shirley, with a view to possible relocation and upgrade of this library as a ‘suburban’ library.”
https://christchurchcitylibraries.com/2025/Libraries2025FacilitiesPlan.pdf, Page 30
This implies that the current Shirley Library is actually a ‘neighbourhood’ library?
Shirley Library & Service Centre: Floor Plan
The actual floor space allocated to the Shirley Library, is less than half of the current building. As the Service Centre (which includes NZ Post) & the Coastal-Burwood Governance Team are also located in this building.
Floor Plan: https://www.10shirleyroad.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/SouthLibraryReport03.jpg
ReVision Youth Friendly Spaces Audit Report: Shirley Library
– Youth Friendly Spaces Audit Report: Shirley Library (Revision Initiative)
– ReVision Youth Audit Shirley Library: Research & Comments
https://www.10shirleyroad.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/CCCDraftAnnualPlan2022JoannaGould.pdf, Page 6
Shirley Library is still considered the second busiest suburban library in Christchurch, even without dedicated learning spaces & meeting rooms.
“It [South] is the third-busiest suburban library, behind Fendalton and Shirley, with 4552 weekly visitors.”
Shirley Library has become our community centre by default, since the Shirley Community Centre was demolished in 2012, as our residents are continuing to ‘vote’ with their feet.