Top of the web – August 2016

Kia ora. We explore what Christchurch City Libraries’ webpages and blog posts and social media postings were popular each month – so we can learn more about what our customers are interested in.

The Stars are on fire gala
WORD Christchurch Writers and Readers Festival. Friday 26 August 2016. Flickr 2016-08-26-IMG_5778

Website pages

There were page views in August. The most popular pages on christchurchcitylibraries.com:

  1. Press Display about page (1st last month)
  2. Learning Centres (7th last month)
  3. Books browse page (3rd last month)
  4. Canterbury earthquake info for kids (NEW)
  5. Hornby Library (NEW)
  6. My account (5th last month)
  7. OverDrive about page (6th last month)
  8. Online resources (NEW)
  9. Request an item (10th last month)
  10. New titles (NEW)

Also of interest this month: Snow Days, WORD Christchurch, Cook Islands Language Week, Is there a JP in the library?, Jenny Pattrick – Community Read, and Reading in mind: Book Scheme for mental health.

August’s popular blog posts

On the Christchurch City Libraries blog – 99 posts published.

Photos on Flickr

There were 72,158 page views in August on Flickr. It now has a total of 5,737,334 page views.

Top on Twitter

We have 4310 followers. Follow us on Twitter.

Love that @MargaretAtwood is doing a cameo on the film of #aliasgrace and tweeting everything including her costume. ^MT

Handpicked sightseeing for #wordchch writers: https://t.co/8uCX4tTOHX No. 1: hairy jewellery for @TheGoodDeath ^DR https://t.co/R7c5dMB2p4

. @Tara_Moss is here for #wordhch next week – here’s her handbook for women & girls. https://t.co/dj6Q7nlpQK  ^DR https://t.co/Ct68k14iKe

Facebook favourites

We have 5498 likes. Like us on Facebook.

The first test between the Springboks and the All Blacks took place in Christchurch at Lancaster Park 35 years ago today – on Saturday 15 August 1981. See our collection of Springbok Tour posters http://ow.ly/dWvP303eaTV and read more: http://ow.ly/fbtD303eaZh ^Donna More about this poster: http://ow.ly/Vb0y303eb2v

The Captain Cook statue in Victoria Square was unveiled on 10 August 1932. http://my.christchurchcitylibraries.com/statues/#Victoria Remember the SCAPE Public Art event when he had his own bathroom? ^Donna

Invercargill City Libraries and Archives wins gold at synchronised shelving! ^Donna



If you are interested in how we derive our rankings, we measure page views on our website, organic reach for Facebook posts, and impressions for tweets.

Tantalising Toronto Library

Toronto Public Library

Check out Author talks on a subdivided city in an age of hyper-diversity.

Visited four amazing libraries yesterday -full on day, see second post for branch libraries. The Toronto Reference Library was reminiscent of our old Central Library with a 70s look but refreshed and inspiring. Lovely atrium creating the sense of where to next! Also glass lifts if you don’t wish to use the stairs. No escalator and while at the time this was seen as short sighted now it’s viewed as progressive.

Light, airy, and a wide variety of happenings for the customer in terms of specialist collections, programmimg and reference support. The learning centres are varied in purpose from computers in dedicated spaces, dedicated rooms for learning and a maker space staffed by Digital Design Technicians who deliver programmes, assist customers with 3D printer and design help, customers printing their own books – real cool along with audio and video production.

These DDT staff also support the branches with pop up mobile labs that are out on rotation with the DDT to facilitate drop ins, books ins, programmes and staff learning.

Collections – approximately a third on display, the rest elsewhere but can be accessed on request. Lots of compactums. Arthur Conan Doyle collection a highlight – dedicated themed space and a librarian with the true gift of storytelling. Anyone can pop in, relax and select from this wonderful collection. You can also loan musical instruments – well used and valued resource.

The Reference area is also a seller for weddings with the couple married at the top with guests seated below – nice little revenue earner.

Technology pervasive. Lost count of the screens and number of computers. Cool lighting as well.


Public Libraries Victoria Network: Great Library Tour 4 2016

Variety in Vancouver

Surrey City Library

Iconic building and external design features with wow- linking Civic buildings and Library. Emphasis on people places, digital literacy, settlement services,outreach and programming.

North Vancouver Public Library

Poopulation 55,000- membership 45,000. Living room of the community. Connecting with you, the community and through technology. 1400 walk in and 1000 digital library usage per day. Opened 2008 and responding to customer feedback re services and space. Digitization room heavily booked.


Vancouver Public

The library resources are visible on street walks – authors and books profiled on street lamps, how cool is that!  Hold this thought: great idea to re-engage our community with Central City Library and have fun. Make it interactive with elements similar to latest Pokemon Go. Amazing aboriginal Storyteller in residence.

Accessible services for all: print/perceptual disabilities access to over 200,000 items in accessible formats

This library is about to embark on a makeover to increase floor area children’s, innovation lab, specialist heritage collections. These rennovation will also increase flexibility of floors 7 and 8.

Jumping Jasper

Four libraries in Edmonton

Clear lines of sight, beautiful and functional design, clutter free, intuitive way finding, natural light, STEM and Maker Spaces programming highlights, strong brand and smart messaging are the first impressions of this strategic focused network of libraries.

On listening to the passionate staff these impressions are quickly linked with evidence of connecting community, building relationships, consistency of service and key messages, flexibility to respond to customer needs, ability to  initiate changes and a focus on agreed network  priorities as outlined in the Strategic Plan – “present ourselves as one library and one staff”.

The three branch libraries are wonderful community spaces. The Central Library equivalent Stanley A Milner Library is about to undergo extensive refurbishment, closing in approximately four months. A bigger Maker Space and Children’s areas will be two of the significant changes.

Clareview Library

Highlands Library


Jasper Place Library


Stanley A. Milner Library

Halifax Central Library

Sneak preview of possible Christchurch Central Library Design elements

Wow I am at a loss for words! Halifax Central Library is impressive on all fronts – design, flow, colour, warmth, vibrant spaces, diverse  services and more –  it delivers all with wow!

It’s best described like your favourite box of chocolates, customer needs and preferences have all been sought, considered and incorporated into the design and delivery. There is a balance of consistency,  variety and uniqueness across the floors so everyone can discover whats on offer culminating in a favourite experience amd/or space. The library as a ‘home away from home’ is fully embraced and repeat visits are clearly the norm with over 2 million visits in the first year. The most common complaint in weekends is “there is nowhere to sit” and people queue outside rushing in to grab these coveted study cells -“they’re the best”. Two lovely customers just arrived and we’re thrilled to get the booth and be photographed.



Community consultation and opportunities to be involved throughout the project created a strong sense of ownership. Three powerful examples are

  1.  Youth contributing to the design of the tables
  2. Residents contributing to the art work with 1000 pieces used on the 5th floor and 5,000 used on the  5th floor – shown below
  3. On opening day 400 pairs of safety scissors were given to customers to share in the cutting of the ribbon.

The service philosophy is a simple but thought provoking statement  “How do we get to ‘yes’ on everything we are asked for?” 

Halifax clearly embraces and initiates change,

  • food is allowed in the local history room
  • First Nations space emotionally moving
  • no charges on damaged items,
  • the ‘collection belongs to the public’ mantra,
  • a successful  campaign titled ‘Come out of the cold” was implemented for Halifax’s most vulnerable,
  •  weddings and funerals are held in the “living room” ( top floor),
  •  pockets of quiet have been retained,
  • programming has been doubled,
  • 5000 room bookings in one year
  • Children’s areas are inspiring and embraced by all the family
  • Media and maker spaces offer opportunity to create and collaborate
  • Site lines are brilliant and strong use of colour for differentiation a real success.

Cool Lego tables ensuring those elusive little bits are stored in the table itself – no storage to worry about.



Customers are “living the library life style. Patterns of usage are changing with customers staying longer with an intensity of space use. People have a personal relationship with the library, it is truly the heart of the community and a place of dignity”.

Every space is pure delight and despite a repeat visit I could have stayed longer. This library epitomizes “for the people by the people” – it is at the heart of the community. Well done everyone 10 out of 10 for an award winning place, space and service. Thanks for hosting us!