Central Library closure

Wellington’s Central Library building is closed until further notice. The footpath around the library building and the public library car park are also closed.

Entrance to Central Library.

Wellington Central Library building is closing


12.04.19 Longer library hours to meet demand

03.04.19 Pop-up library service for CBD to open in Manners St, in May.

We’ve made the decision to close the Central Library after receiving advice from engineers that the building has structural vulnerabilities which mean it may not perform well in the event of a significant earthquake. 
Engineering Assessment Memo  (1.9MB PDF)
Engineering Assessment  (317KB PDF)

The Central Library is one of Wellington City’s busiest buildings, with 3000 visitors a day. We realise this closure will affect many people and we are working hard to minimise disruption. 

The building is not damaged but the vulnerabilities identified using new guidelines from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) are such that we have made the decision to close the building to the public and relocate our staff while next steps are planned.

Public safety is our number one priority.

News - Council Chief Executive makes necessary decision to close Central Library - 19.03.2019

Accessing services and facilities

You can still use any one of our 11 branch libraries located in suburbs across Wellington.

We’re working on how we can extend our branch hours and open some of our branches for additional hours during the evenings and weekends. We’re also working to set up alternative library services in the central city.

We're automatically renewing all items currently out on loan from the Central Library. You can either hold on to the item for now or return it to one of our other branches. We won’t charge you a fee if you return items to another branch. 

We have set up a small book returns box in the ground floor reception area of the Wellington City Council building at 101 Wakefield Street. This is an interim measure until we can get a larger returns area set up. This is only for book returns at this stage. It is available within Council working hours – 7.30am5.20pm.

We are working on ways we can make our collection available while the Central Library is closed.

Members can also access a range of resources online through our eLibrary, including eBooks, eAudio, eMagazines, online databases and digitised heritage.

We are starting to contact customers with reserved items to arrange for these items to be collected from either one of our other branches or the Wellington City Council building on Wakefield Street. If you have an item on reserve and have been notified that it’s ready to collect, expect to hear from our team soon.

We’ll let you know via our website, social media and e-newsletter when alternative services are set up and able to be accessed.

Details about the closure
Wellington Central Library Closure Map  (768KB PDF)

Citizens Advice Bureau and Justice of the Peace service desk

From Monday 25 March these services will be available on the ground floor of Wellington City Council, 101 Wakefield Street.

Citizen Advice Bureau hours are:

  • Monday: 9.30am-5.15pm
  • Tuesday to Thursday: 930am-6.30pm
  • Friday: 9.30am-3.30pm
  • Saturday: 11am-1pm

Justice of the Peace service desk hours:

  • Monday to Friday: 11am-2pm
  • Tuesday and Thursday evening: 5pm-6pm
  • Wednesday evening: 5pm-6.30pm
  • Saturday: 11am-12.30pm


Wellington’s branch libraries are community focal points, providing knowledge facilities and resources in a welcoming environment. Our 11 branch libraries remain open to the public and we encourage people to make use of these spaces.
Library Branches by Suburb
Library Opening Hours

Wellington’s Community Centres are also available for anyone to visit and use.
Community Centres

Access to wifi and printing

If you use the library for wifi, internet access or printing, free wifi is available throughout Wellington’s Central Business District. All 11 branch libraries and some of our Community Centres provide wifi, internet PCs and printing facilities. You may wish to contact them directly to check availability.
CBD free wifi

Contacting Central Library

You can continue to contact our Central Library team directly via enquiries@wcl.govt.nz or 04 801 4040.

Library email addresses and phone lines will continue to be monitored, though there may be a longer delay than normal in responding. 

Branch libraries and community centres are operating as normal and can assist. You can also contact the Wellington City i-Site or Council Service Centre with general enquiries.