Explore Swanston Library

Our Vision

The Library precinct has provided 40% more study space, an enhanced service model, enhanced technology and improved access. The new Library responds to the needs of the students reflecting the diverse range of activities that occur across the University: connecting, experimenting, making, researching, collaborating and thinking.

Library Study Spaces resized

Our inspiration

The University has identified the renovation of the Swanston Library as a key priority. The Library is rated as the number one destination for students on campus and it is crucial for RMIT to be a first class facility. An updated Library building will allow for increased capacity and for us to better adapt to new modes of delivering Library services. The new design has been developed by one of the country’s foremost educational architects, Lyons (and a team consisting of MvS, Maddison, Harrison & White and NMBW) using student and user surveys and best practice from the world’s leading academic libraries.

Features of the new Library

More study space

This vibrant, yet comfortable and supported learning environment features a variety of spaces that includes both secured and open spaces that has almost double the seating. Light and airy social spaces connect seamlessly with purpose-designed study spaces, outdoor and weather-protected terrace gardens; collaborative, silent and quiet study areas; and consultation and seminar rooms. The versatility of the transformed Library spaces facilitate extended opening hours.

New Service Model

A new service model has strengthened links between the Library and student support services including the Study and Learning Centre and the Disability Liaison Unit. Roving service staff (equipped with answers for common questions) are guiding students to Librarians for reference, research and information management assistance. The Library and student support areas collaborate to offer study skills classes, drop-in sessions and other learning initiatives.

Enhanced Technology

The transformed Library supports both onsite and online learning and teaching. Individual and collaborative computing facilities and accessible power outlets are readily available. High-quality wireless internet spans the buildings and surrounds. Digital exhibition, signage and learning technologies complement face-to-face student support.

Improved Access to Collections

The complete refurbishment, over two levels (5 and 6) of buildings 8, 10 and 12, consolidates the physical collection into building 8. Digital and physical collections will continue to be tailored to learning, teaching and research needs. Well-lit shelves with wheelchair accessible aisles will be clearly arranged. New display and exhibition facilities are aiding engagement with the Library’s collections as well as highlighting core collections. External return chutes simplify the return of loans.

Precinct Timeline

Early 2017

Stage 1 Opening / Stage 2 Construction

The Library will operate from the newly renovated space - Building 10/12, levels 5 & 6.
Construction will start on Building 8, Level 5.

Early 2017 - Mid 2017

Stage 2 Opening / Stage 3 Construction

Stage 2 completion for Building 8, level 5. It will be open along with Building 10/12 space. Stage 3 construction starts on Building 8, level 6.

Mid 2017

Construction complete

Grand opening of new Library.
The Library refurbishment will be fully completed in mid 2017 and all spaces will be open - with over 1000 new student spaces and increased access.

Explore the Swanston Library

Launch the Interactive Map