New Zealand Parliamentary Library

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New Zealand Parliamentary Library
WellingtonParliamentaryLibrary gobeirne.jpg
The Parliamentary Library in 2006
General information
Architectural style Gothic revival
Town or city Wellington
Country New Zealand
Coordinates 41°16′38″S 174°46′36″E / 41.27723°S 174.77666°E / -41.27723; 174.77666
Construction started 1897
Completed 1899
Designated 20 July 1989
Reference no. 217
NZHP website

Completed in 1899, the New Zealand Parliamentary Library (formerly the General Assembly Library)[1] is the oldest of the buildings in the Parliament complex. It stands to the north of Parliament House (to its right, looking from the front).

The library was designed in Gothic revival style and was fire resistant, being constructed of masonry. The third storey of the design was not built to save money. It had an iron fire-door separating the library from the main entrance section. This saved the library from the fire of 1907 which destroyed the rest of the (wooden) parliament buildings. (Coincidentally, exactly the same thing happened in Ottawa, Canada, in 1916—with fire doors saving the Library when the Centre Block of the Canadian Parliament burned.[2])

Like Parliament House, the building was strengthened and refurbished in the 1990s. It still houses Parliament's library.[3]

The building is registered with the New Zealand Historic Places Trust as a Category I heritage structure with registration number 217.[3]


  1. ^ McLintock, Alexander Hare, ed. (2005) [originally published in 1966]. "General Assembly Library, Wellington". An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand. Retrieved 28 February 2018. 
  2. ^ "Feb. 03, 1916: When Canada's Parliament burned". Radio Canada. 3 February 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2018. 
  3. ^ a b "Parliamentary Library". Register of Historic Places. Heritage New Zealand. Retrieved 10 January 2014. 

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