The design phase of a $20 million upgrade to Griffith University’s Gold Coast campus Library is now complete, setting a new standard in tertiary services for the region.

Far from the traditional library model, the ultramodern three-storey complex will act as multi-use student centre designed to support a wide range of social and learning needs.

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research) and Provost Gold Coast, Professor Ned Pankhurst said the refurbishment was an exciting new chapter in the development of Griffith’s Gold Coast campus and would act as a heart to the Knowledge Precinct.

“So much of tertiary life revolves around the Library, its services and facilities and this upgrade represents a completely contemporary take on how students behave and like to learn,” Professor Pankhurst said.

“The design and fit out will allow students to simultaneously connect to their social, educational and professional worlds. By doing so, their experience of learning takes on wider dimensions and truly becomes part of their everyday life.”

Professor Pankhurst said each level of the building would have its own zoned areas based on the particular learning purpose and equipment and facilities will align to each of those needs.

“Importantly, the ground floor will be the new home for the Gumurrii Student Support Unit, with performing arts and open-air spaces alongside seminar and student counselling facilities,” he said.

“The Unit is a great example of the type of integrated or flexible learning environment we are creating here and is a wonderful outcome for both the campus and our Indigenous learners.

“The campus and surrounding area is a designated knowledge precinct, and site of the new Griffith Health Centre.

“The Library will be critical in meeting the need of the University’s expanded medical and allied health research, training and services, as well as other new degree programs.

“With increasing demand for high-quality and sustainable tertiary services, the futuristic nature of this building forges the way for learning trends that will evolve over the coming decades.

“Not only will this innovative building meet the emerging needs of our students, it will transform the Library into a bright and lively student hub and home for learning,” Professor Pankhurst said.

Construction on the Library will start in December this year and open in late 2012 to coincide with the completion of the new Griffith Health Centre.