COFFS Harbour school students met recently to discuss their desired youth space within the new central library in the Cultural and Civic Space building.
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Students from Coffs Harbour Senior College met with members of the BVN Architecture team charged with designing the controversial new building, Coffs Harbour City Council Mayor Councillor Denise Knight, and Coffs Harbour City Council staff to learn more about the design development of the youth space.
The BVN team showed the students digital sketches of the space and asked for their feedback on furniture and technology, as well as their ideas about how they would use the custom-designed space.
Coffs Harbour Senior College student Catherine Lagettie said she really liked the flexibility and design of the new youth space.
“The project is really exciting for people my age, and is something that Coffs Harbour is missing and really needs,” Catherine said.
Coffs Harbour Senior College Creative and Performing Arts teacher Cheryl Ward said it was important for local youths to have access to a well-designed and resourced public library.
“While a public library offers benefits to every young person, for some, this youth space will be their only opportunity to access the technology and resources needed to learn and grow outside of the school environment,” Ms Ward said.
Coffs Harbour Mayor Cr Denise Knight said it was refreshing and sometimes surprising to hear the kinds of things local youths want from their library.
“Knowing that we’re creating a space so our young people can have access to the best possible cultural, social and educational resources keeps me inspired and motivated,” Cr Knight said.
BVN Interior Designer for the Cultural and Civic Space project Amelia Lipa said youth spaces within libraries provide an environment for young people to connect, study, relax, dream, work and hang out together.
“A dedicated youth space shows teens they are valued by the community and typically leads to a deeper engagement with other areas of the library,” Ms Lipa said.
“It’s interesting and surprising for us to hear the insights of young people who have different and new ways of thinking, helping us to develop and create spaces to meet and exceed their requirements.”
The meeting was one of three library youth space meetings conducted during July.
By Emma DARBIN