Progress towards new Rolleston town centre

by Mike Isle

Selwyn District Council is well under way with planning for the first major development in Rolleston’s new town centre.

The centrepiece project for the town centre is the new Rolleston Library and community centre, which will be located on what is currently part of Rolleston Reserve, in Tennyson Street.

It will replace the existing library, which is now too small for Rolleston’s and the district’s growing population — and will provide a flexible, multi-use space for a wide range of community purposes. 

Selwyn mayor, Sam Broughton, said community spaces and libraries are changing.

“We want our new facility to be a place of learning, idea sharing, culture and exploration.

“The new facility will include a library, but will be about more than just books.

It will also offer flexible multipurpose spaces for activities and exhibitions, performances, learning programmes and music. We want our community to have a place to meet, reflect and be entertained.”

The council recently undertook consultation with residents on ideas for the new centre, and will be reporting back on community feedback soon.

Construction will start later this year, and the facility is scheduled to open in 2019.

The Rolleston Town Centre Masterplan was adopted by the Council in 2014, after an extensive community consultation and planning process. The plan sets out a vision for a town centre that will be a vibrant and engaging destination for Rolleston, Selwyn Central ward and the wider Selwyn district.

Since the Rolleston Town Centre Masterplan was adopted, a number of steps have been completed to progress the development including: roading projects such as the Tennyson/Kidman Streets roundabout, the development of Foster Park, adoption of the Land Use Recovery Plan designating the town centre as a key activity area, and the statutory Reserve Exchange process to enable redevelopment of part of the existing reserve.

Alongside the library and community centre project, the council is currently undertaking preliminary work to identify opportunities for retail and hospitality areas, and bringing together a design team to oversee the development.

The council says the town centre will set the standard for later elements including: reserve, open spaces and playgrounds, town square and civic space, indoor/outdoor dining and hospitality, retail and entertainment areas, pedestrian-friendly streets and spaces.