Growing Hamilton

Names for Rototuna’s new library revealed

Design concept of Te Kete Aronui - Rototuna Library

The new Rototuna Village library has been given the names Te Kete Aronui and Rototuna Library.

The decision brings Hamiltonians a step closer to enjoying the space in Rototuna, which is expected to open in late 2022/early 2023.

The name was put forward by Mana Whenua representatives Te Haa o te Whenua o Kirikiriroa (THaWK) and holds a significant meaning in the Maaori and spiritual worlds.

Te kete aronui is one of three baskets of knowledge and refers to the arts and crafts which benefit the earth and all living things, said THaWK representative Sonny Karena.

“This basket relates to knowledge acquired through careful observation of the environment. It’s also the basket of ritual, literature and philosophy, and is sometimes regarded as the basket of the humanities,” said Sonny.

The other two baskets are te kete tuauri (sacred knowledge) and te kete tuatea (ancestral knowledge).

In Maaori legend the three baskets of knowledge, along with two small stones, were brought back to earth by Tane when he returned from his climb to the highest heaven after his parents, Ranginui and Papatuuaanuku, were separated.

Key Projects Programme Manager, Natasha Ryan says the name is very-suited for the library which offers so many resources for the community, more than just books – bookable rooms, a makerspace and a range of Council customer services to name a few.

“The name, Te Kete Aronui, refers to the purpose of a library, a basket of knowledge.  But the mention of kete is also reference to the wetland and flax found there that we are ‘weaving’ through the library design in response to the community feedback.”

The library and community hub are now in the detailed design stage.

Updates on the Rototuna community village project can be found at

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